One of the more prominent murals from POW! WOW! Long Beach’s collection of outdoor public art pieces was painted over Thursday. The wonderfully whimsical, detailed work of art featured a toucan and an apple-headed character in a tropical, oceanic scene, created by Antonio Segura, or DULK, as the Valencia-based artist is more widely known, during PWLB’s 2017 festival.

This wasn’t a decision made lightly. Due to an excessive amount of vandalism that nearly covered the bottom third of the mural, discussions between the Downtown Long Beach Alliance, Dulk, the city and PWLB organizers determined it needed to be painted over. Artists whose PWLB murals are vandalized often go back to the site to touch their murals up, sometimes PWLB organizers will do the job. But with Dulk situated in Spain and the intricate nature of the piece difficult to replicate, the task of restoring the mural to its original luster wasn’t possible.

The Dulk mural (top) located behind The Loop on Ocean Boulevard and Pine Avenue and bordered by the Long Beach Convention Center, was whitewashed (below) due to excessive amounts of graffiti.

Looking at the bright side, a PWLB official said the now all-white wall, located just below The Loop on Ocean Boulevard and Pine Avenue on Jergins Tunnel, may open up a new opportunity. If and when the mural festival is able to be held again, Dulk may return to paint another of his surreal, character-heavy scenes. Mural fans can hope that by 2021, when PWLB aims to return, that all of that and more will be a possibility.

Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her @hugelandmass on Twitter and Instagram and at [email protected].