Tess Nichol is an NZME. News Service reporter.

Steven Adams mural holds uncertain fate

Two men take a selfie in front of a mural of NBA Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams. Photo / AP
Two men take a selfie in front of a mural of NBA Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams. Photo / AP

The future of the massive Steve Adams mural in Oklahoma City is up in the air because the building's owner didn't get council consent to have it painted.

Kiwi artist Graham Hoete, aka Mr G, spraypainted the mural of the rising basketball star while on a trip to the States last month, saying at the time "I can't go to the US and not do one of the bro.

"If I wouldn't have found a wall, I wouldn't have done it. So I'm stoked I have a wall."

However, it turns out the owner of that wall didn't have the authority to give Mr Hoete the go-ahead to paint the mural.

In Oklahoma City, permits are required for all murals, planning department liaison Robbie Kienzle told the Herald.

"At this time the mural is not permitted," she said.

"I am currently working with the building owner to try and rectify this situation."

The process for approval included submitting an application for Oklahoma City Arts Commission review and paying a fee for a permit.

According to the city council's website, administrative fees can be as much as US$600 for one mural and the permit costs up to a further US$112 for the mural itself, depending on its size.

According to Ms Kienzle, it was the owner, not Mr Hoete, responsible for the non-compliance.

She did not say whether the woman would be fined or if the mural would be painted over, adding it was still possible it could get approval.

"While not ideal, it is possible to retroactively approve a mural and the building owner has submitted an application for Oklahoma City Arts Commission review," Ms Kienzle said.

The next step in deciding the mural's fate was a public meeting being held by the Oklahoma City Arts Commission on July 18.

Public forums were part of the standard approval process "where the public can either support or oppose the mural."

A certificate of approval from the Design Review Commission would also be required for retroactive approval.

That meeting will be held in August.

Mural permits were needed to ensure the quality of the mural, from the artist's abilities to the kind of materials they were using, Ms Kienzle said.

It was important the work was judged to enhance the building it was painted on.

Insurance for both the artist and work of art were required, as was the artist's release of rights under the US Visual Arts Rights Act so maintenance and repairs could be made quickly by the owner of the building without the artist's permission.

- NZ Herald

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