The artwork was first proposed by Akse P19 to the Manchester Council in collaboration with Headstock Festival to raise awareness for mental health in aid of Shout, a mental health support messaging service.
“So my mural of Ian Curtis based on the original photograph by Philippe Carly has been painted over to promote the release of a new album,” the graffiti artist said on Instagram after the mural was painted over on August 16.
“Personally I don’t have anything against hand-painted advertising as this is how I make a living, but this mural was painted in collaboration with Headstock UK and supported by Manchester City Council and Sweet Nothing to raise awareness for Mental Health.
“It 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.
Aitch has since responded to photos and comments about the destroyed mural, noting that he had “no idea” his album promo would cover up such a beloved artwork.
“I don't just choose locations for billboards, this is the first time I’ve seen it myself. Getting fixed as we speak,” he tweeted yesterday evening, before adding: “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.”
Thank you— Peter Hook (@peterhook) August 16, 2022
Former member of Joy Division and close friend of the late Ian Curtis, Peter Hook, also responded to Aitch’s tweet thanking him for recognising the iconic artwork.
Gemma Ross is Mixmag's Editorial Assistant, follow her on Twitter