The recent street art tribute to Small Heath icon Malik by secretive artist Foka Wolf in Birmingham has been destroyed by an unidentified vandal on Christmas Eve.

The much-loved pasteup of a living legend from the Small Heath area of Birmingham has been left torn and tattered in Upper Trinity Street, Birmingham.

Earlier this month the enigmatic Birmingham street artist Foka Wolf produced a giant poster tribute to an icon of Birmingham who is recognisable to generations of Brummies.

The poster was an affectionate and celebratory tribute to a charismatic and beloved character from Small Heath known as Malik.

The pasteup of Malik, seen here intact, was a much-loved work of street art in DigbethRangzeb Hussain
The pasteup of Malik, seen here intact, was a much-loved work of street art in Digbeth

The striking new artwork was pasted up in Digbeth on 1st December but was targeted and torn down by a vandal on Christmas Eve.

The damage was spotted tonight (24 December) by local volunteers who were distributing food parcels to vulnerable people around the Digbeth area.

The faith-inspired volunteer team, known as The Waste Warriors, conduct cleanup operations around Birmingham and also carry out food drives.

Ali Akbar, from The Waste Warriors, spoke exclusively to I Am Birmingham about the shocking damage to the Malik tribute: “We were out distributing parcels of food around the city to homeless people during the festive season, and as we got to Digbeth, near the Bordesley train station bridge, I noticed the beautiful poster tribute to Malik by Foka Wolf had been ripped apart.

“Malik’s head has been torn off, and there’s no way this damage can be repaired.

“It’s so heartbreaking to see this aggressive and jealous destruction.”

The pasteup tribute to Small Heath icon Malik was produced by Foka WolfAli Akbar
The damage to the Malik tribute is too extensive to be repaired

Akbar added: “Malik is a sweet person, a real legend, and he’s been bringing smiles to people for years.

“Foka Wolf’s tribute to Malik received so much love when the story was published in ‘I Am Birmingham’. People from all over were sharing pictures of the poster.

“It was really sad to see the vandalism tonight. At first I thought the damage was weather related but I inspected the tears and rips and its nothing to do with the wind or rain. Human hands carried out the damage. This was targeted vandalism.

“I can’t understand why someone would tear apart this amazing and positive poster.

“There is so much rage in the way the poster has been attacked. The malicious person or yobs who did this vented mega anger. Some real hatred has gone into the damage.

“We’ll be contacting local businesses for CCTV footage in the morning.”

Sadly, the vandalism to street art tributes is not new. A mural celebrating the visit to Birmingham by civil rights campaigner Malcolm X was defaced in Kings Heath in September.

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