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Giant penis mural in New York painted over by landlord

Passersby who spoke with The Independent didn't seem to mind the looming phallus

Roisin O'Connor
Thursday 28 December 2017 10:45
Artist collective behind New York penis mural: 'It's all about sexual freedom'

A five-storey painting of a giant penis that attracted both alarm and amusement in New York has been painted over.

The mural appeared on an apartment building on Broome Street in the Lower East Side. It was painted by Swedish artist Carolina Falkholt after she was commissioned by a local street art foundation, to complement a similar artwork of a vagina on Pike Street.

Falkholt told the Guardian her work often evoked messages of "not feeling ashamed of your body and who you are as a sexual being".

"I usually paint giant vaginas, pussies and c**ts," she said, "and since I had just finished one on the side of a five-storey building, I felt like a d**k was needed. The wall space on Broome was a perfect fit for it."

Warning: Explicit image below

Unfortunately, according to NBC New York, the artist or the foundation did not receive permission from the building's owner to create the work. By Wednesday afternoon (27 December), a team of painting contractors had begun the work of painting over it.

The artwork received mixed reactions from New Yorkers. Speaking to The Independent, one passerby said "crazy people will want it gone quickly, but this is the LES [Lower East Side]. This mural is what is supposed to happen here".

Chelsea Ritschel/The Independent

One woman who worked with children in the area said she was not concerned about the potential impact it could have.

"For me it is art but for kids it's another thing," she said. "I don't think the kids would see it. I had to look up twice myself."

The New York Post reported a police source which said they wanted to speak with Falkholt: "No arrest yet, but the charge would be criminal mischief felony."

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