A mural of Joy Division’s Ian Curtis was painted over with an advert for Manchester MC Aitch’s album.
A rapper has promised to have a mural of music icon Ian Curtis “fixed pronto” after it was painted over with an advert for his new album.
The promo for Manchester MC Aitch’s Close to Home was put up over artist Akse P19’s image of the Joy Division singer in the city’s Northern Quarter.
The original mural was created as part of a mental health campaign.
On Twitter, Aitch said it was “getting fixed”, adding: “No way on earth would I want to disrespect a local hero.”
The mural of the singer, who took his own life at his home in 1980 shortly before the Salford band were due to go on tour in the US, was put up for World Mental Health Day in 2020.
Akse P19, who also had to repair his image of England star Marcus Rashford after it was defaced in 2021, said on Instagram that while he did not “have anything against hand-painted advertising”, the mural “had become a cultural landmark and meant so much to people from Manchester and beyond”.
“It doesn’t take much common sense to understand that this mural should have remained for what it represented and stood for,” he added.
The rapper said he acted as soon as he heard that the Port Street mural had been painted over and “me and my team are getting this fixed pronto”.
It’s come to light that the iconic Ian Curtis mural on Port Street has been painted over with my album artwork. This is the first time I’ve heard of this, me and my team are getting this fixed pronto. No way on earth would I want to disrespect a local hero like Ian.
MCR ❤️🐝— Aitch (@OfficialAitch)
His response was welcomed by Curtis’s former Joy Division bandmate Peter Hook, who had said the mural being painted over was “very sad to see”.
Thanking Aitch, he said moving quickly to rectify the situation was a “great gesture”.
Musician and journalist John Robb also praised the rapper and said there was “room in the city centre and record collections to celebrate you and Ian Curtis”.
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham added that Aitch “shouldn’t have been put in this position”.
“Ian is a true icon of our city,” he said.
“He must be fully restored and left in his place for time in memoriam.
“Thanks to everyone for showing what Ian means to us.”
Work on restoring the mural began earlier, with Aitch’s advert being painted over.
Work has begun to restore the Ian Curtis mural in the Northern Quarter after an advert for @OfficialAitch‘s new album was painted over it. @OfficialAitch tweeted saying: “No way on Earth would I want to disrespect a local hero like Ian”. pic.twitter.com/EtnZuAY2Vd— BBC Radio Manchester (@BBCRadioManc)