Fleeting Wonders: City Workers Mistakenly Scrub City-Commissioned Art - Atlas Obscura
Our new kids' book is on sale! Shop now.

Fleeting Wonders: City Workers Mistakenly Scrub City-Commissioned Art

The portrait was meant for an official street art retrospective in France.

 

#c215 contre la mairie (coté gauche).

Posted by REIMS Street Art on Thursday, February 18, 2016

The cleaning department of Reims, France is a little too good at their job. This past weekend, they scrubbed the wrong thing–a piece of art officially commissioned by the city.

The painting, of a sad-faced boy with his arms around his knees, was by renowned French street artist C215, alias Christian Guémy, who has been called “France’s answer to Banksy.” He is known for his stencil portraits of street kids, the elderly, beggars, and refugees, which he paints on infrastructure in major cities.

Although authorities in Reims commissioned the piece, they failed to tell the city’s anti-graffiti team to leave it alone. About 10 days after the art was first painted, it was gone.

 

The piece “was to be part of a major retrospective of work” by C215, reports The Connexion. Three other works were spared the sponge, and C215 will return to Reims next month to make more. Although he will repaint the now-empty spot, this particular boy is forever lost–as Guémy told AFP News, “I never do the same thing twice.”

Every day, we track down a fleeting wonder—something amazing that’s only happening right now. Have a tip for us? Tell us about it! Send your temporary miracles to cara@atlasobscura.com.