Five apples plagued by vandalism

Members of Dunclug Partnership at the art unveiling in the Peoples Park. INBT27-256AC

Members of Dunclug Partnership at the art unveiling in the Peoples Park. INBT27-256AC

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Vandals have struck again and again at the Five Apples sculptures since they were unveiled last week.

Japanese artist Shiro Masuyama designed the artworks after workshops with Dunclug and Doury Road residents. The apples aim to reflect themes such as community, trust, the future and to be “a symbol of aspiration for continued peace”.

Members of the Ballymena Inter Ethnic Forum at the art unveiling in the Peoples Park along with artist Shiro Masuyama. INBT27-254AC

Members of the Ballymena Inter Ethnic Forum at the art unveiling in the Peoples Park along with artist Shiro Masuyama. INBT27-254AC

Since last Monday, the stems on the apples have been broken on four occasions.

After the third attack the artist tried to remain positive and took it as an opportunity to “meet many local people in Ballymena while fixing the sculptures”. But after the fourth attack on Thursday night he wrote on his website of his disappointment.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council Billy Ashe appealed for the vandals to stop.

“This is a community project and an attack on the project is an attack on the community itself. I would appeal to anyone with information to contact the police.”

Artist Shiro Masuyama is pictured with PJ McAvoy (Chair Dunclug Partnership), Cllr. Audrey Wales, Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr. Billy Ashe, and young Andrew around one of the art pieces in the Peoples Park. INBT27-253AC

Artist Shiro Masuyama is pictured with PJ McAvoy (Chair Dunclug Partnership), Cllr. Audrey Wales, Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr. Billy Ashe, and young Andrew around one of the art pieces in the Peoples Park. INBT27-253AC

PJ McAvoy, chair of Dunclug Partnership, makes a presentation to council Arts Officer Rosalind Lowry, for all her hard work in the new art project in the Peoples Park. INBT27-251AC

PJ McAvoy, chair of Dunclug Partnership, makes a presentation to council Arts Officer Rosalind Lowry, for all her hard work in the new art project in the Peoples Park. INBT27-251AC

Students and staff from St. Patrick's College along with principal Mrs. C. Magee, art teacher Kieron Slack, artist Shiro Masuyama and Colum Best (Dunclug Partnership) at the Peoples Park. INBT27-255AC

Students and staff from St. Patrick's College along with principal Mrs. C. Magee, art teacher Kieron Slack, artist Shiro Masuyama and Colum Best (Dunclug Partnership) at the Peoples Park. INBT27-255AC