A Graffiti Artist is Suing the NYPD For Destroying His Mural
The Kaves mural was destroyed during an NYPD campaign to paint over graffiti across the city.
On April 10th, the NYPD‘s 84th Precinct launched a campaign to clean up graffiti across northwest Brooklyn. Among the pieces destroyed in the process was “Death From Above,” a piece by Michael “Kaves” McLeer, renowned artist and Brooklyn native. In his spare time, McLeer owns and works at Brooklyn Made Tattoo parlor in Bay Ridge. On Tuesday, McLeer filed a class-action lawsuit, accusing the NYPD of endangering “hundreds of valuable, recognized, and permitted artworks.”
Kaves dedicated “Death From Above” to his mother Donna Blanchard, who died in 2014 in a hit-and-run accident that also claimed the life of his four-year-old sister Michelle Blanchard. The driver was never found.
“When I found out this piece was destroyed, I was devastated,” Kaves told the New York Daily News. “When I made this work, I was full of pride. I felt it had an epic quality to it. It was a piece dedicated to my mother and became one of my oldest public pieces, standing untouched for 13 years.”
During today’s Community & NYPD graffiti cleanup:
➡️Officers partnered up with volunteers from around Farragut to clean graffiti from 115 York St.
➡️Let’s keep working together to keep NYC graffiti-free! pic.twitter.com/gkOct8EDYe
— NYPD 84th Precinct (@NYPD84Pct) April 10, 2021