Artist Determined to Finish Mural Despite Vandal

A muralist has returned to his work twice to find it covered in graffiti

By Candice Nguyen
|  Saturday, Feb 22, 2014  |  Updated 9:39 AM PDT
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NBC 7’s Candice Nguyen speaks with Michael Rosenblatt, an artist who’s been painting a mural on the wall of Father Joe’s maintenance facility on 17th and Commercial streets in San Diego’s East Village. The artwork has been challenging, however, since unknown vandals continue to tag it with graffiti.

NBC 7’s Candice Nguyen speaks with Michael Rosenblatt, an artist who’s been painting a mural on the wall of Father Joe’s maintenance facility on 17th and Commercial streets in San Diego’s East Village. The artwork has been challenging, however, since unknown vandals continue to tag it with graffiti.

After just 11 days of work, artist Michael Rosenblatt found his mural in the East Village defaced by a vandal.

But instead of throwing in his paint brush, Rosenblatt said he’s determined to finish the project and hopes surveillance video helps catch the culprit.

Six months ago, Rosenblatt agreed to paint the mural for free if Father Joe’s/St. Vincent de Paul Village supplied paint and equipment.

They agreed, and he started working on the wall of Father Joe’s maintenance facility on 17th and Commercial streets.

Rosenblatt is in the process of painting an ocean view for those down and out in the community.

“I want to help these people by giving them something enjoyable to look at. They have thanked me over and over again for bringing brightness into their lives,” he said.

Wednesday morning, Rosenblatt showed up the site and saw red tagging covered a significant portion of his mural.

He fixed it that day, but returned Thursday morning to find more tagging.

That time, the graffiti covered more than half the art.

The head of maintenance for Father Joe’s believes the same person is responsible for both incidents because it appears the same type of paint is used.

Since the incidents, security officials have set up a surveillance camera. They say they’ll involve law enforcement if the culprit continues and remains uncaught. 

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