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Anger as short-sighted vandals ruin Hackney Downs' first public artwork

PUBLISHED: 15:54 20 September 2010

The artist Eva Lis stands next to Vandalism at Eva Lis's Tunnel Vision at Hackney Downs on 18th September 2010

The artist Eva Lis stands next to Vandalism at Eva Lis's Tunnel Vision at Hackney Downs on 18th September 2010

Olivia Harris, oliviaharris@mac.com 07881 810 878

Artist and homeless workers employed to help build Tunnel Vision left devastated

HACKNEY Downs’ first ever public artwork fell victim to vandals last week.

Tunnel Vision built by artist Eva Lis with the help of homeless workers opened on September 10 only to be destroyed just days later.

The installation - a labyrinth of polythene-covered tunnels - was targeted by thugs who slashed the walls and tried to smash the wooden framework at about 7pm on Wednesday (September 16).

Organisers also think the short-sighted attackers stole hard hats and equipment used by five migrant workers who were employed by Slade School graduate Eva to create the structure.

Chiara Williams, of WW Gallery in Queensdown Road which presented the installation, said: “Someone has just gone and slashed all of the corridors of the tunnel. It is all just completely ruined.

“The artist is upset and the workers are upset because they got really attached to it. It is just a real shame.”

She said about two hundred people had visited the artwork over the opening weekend and that her team had patched up the damage to open it to the public again before it closed on Sunday (September 19).

Eva, who used her experiences as an illegal immigrant in the Netherlands to inspire her work, said she had chosen the park because it was “quite an abandoned place, not over stimulated with activities”.

A police spokeswoman said officers were investigating alleged criminal damage at the site and were using CCTV images for information.

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