Fix the Damage your Advertisement did to the Kurt Cobain Tribute

My friend wrote this open letter to BECU today. I would like to share this with the BECU community and ask what BECU intends to do to right this wrong.

 

"As many of you have seen the last couple days, the tribute to Kurt Cobain across from Cal Anderson Park was painted over by a BECU advertisement over the weekend. For those interested in voicing a complaint, you can hit 'send a suggestion' through BECU's website or call Hunters Capital directly at 206 328 3333. Below is a letter I have written to both if you'd like to know more about its impact.

To BECU and Hunters Capital,

I'd like to file a complaint in regards to the mural that was painted by Weirdocult across from Cal Anderson Park in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. Previously in this space was a mural titled “Kant Complain”, a tribute to Kurt Cobain painted by one of the world's most renowned street artists, DFace, just last August. As a piece of public art intended for the consumption of all individuals who were lucky enough to see it, it was a priceless gift that didn’t survive more than 8 months; its destruction is just as much disheartening as it is an embarrassment to the city of Seattle.

While I’m sure you’re aware of the impact Kurt Cobain’s legacy has had on Seattle’s music scene and it’s exteriors, your actions cut into an even deeper issue that’s at the heart of the struggle of arts and culture in our city.

The mural, for one, was made possible by a small local gallery who paid thousands, I would guess close to tens of thousands, of dollars into making this happen. Not to mention the hundreds of hours it took to secure the artist, fly him and his crew from London, and go through appropriate logistics to entrust all stakeholders. In just a matter of hours, the sweat off their backs has been rendered useless by you, Weirdocult, and all other parties involved.

In a place where a healthy tech economy tends to swaddle the attention and investment of those coming into our rapidly growing city, it has become increasingly difficult to cultivate a sense of artistic awareness at the same rate. These short-sighted actions perfectly epitomize this struggle, and as a member I’m sorry to say it had to be at the behest of BECU and Hunters Capital, a place who not only prides itself on being comprised of its own community but also putting that community first.

BECU and Hunters Capital, I ask that you make this right. I ask that you find a way to repair the damage that has been done. If you’d like to learn more about the artist, you can visit his Instagram page @dface_official, or you can visit the Army Surplus store on 1st and Blanchard in Belltown where another one of his murals still stands. If you’d like to learn more about the gallery that made it happen, they go by the name of Treason Gallery and are on 3rd and Jackson in downtown Seattle. Ironically enough, this is the same gallery who represents John Keatley, the photographer and artist behind BECU’s marketing campaigns. John had an exhibition titled “Uniform” at Treason in January of 2017, which you can read about here:

https://www.seattletimes.com/…/3-seattle-gallery-shows-to-…/.

I don’t point this out to patronize, but only to highlight just how connected we are as a city, a public, and a community, and how our actions are so closely tied together. BECU and Hunters Capital, please find a way to pay back to your community what has been lost."

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Community Manager

Hi @teach_the_world,

Welcome to the MIX and thank you for your comment. In honor of Pride Month, we commissioned a local artist to create a mural celebrating community members from across Seattle. We placed our mural on a wall that the building owner had already scheduled to be repainted. However, in the process, we let down those who cherished the existing Kurt Cobain mural. We sincerely apologize to anyone we disappointed. We take full responsibility and are working with the Treason Gallery to find a solution. We both have an interest in celebrating the community and art of Seattle and are confident we will find a way to benefit our artists and their fans in the city. -Reiners

Sightseer

Since writing this post I have found out that BECU is working hard to repair this 8-month-old tribute. My friend and I are both very proud of the swift acts towards a resolution that BECU has taken. Everyone makes mistakes (even very costly ones) but how you resolve a situation matters more to me than the situation in the first place. Thank you for your ethical actions BECU and your goodwill towards the culture of the regions that you serve.

Community Manager

Thank you @teach_the_world.  We're excited to share that we're working with Treason Gallery to bring D*Face to Seattle to paint another “Kant Complain” mural on Capitol Hill. We appreciate the feedback we have received from community members and will continue to share details as they are finalized. -Reiners