New Native American mural on JFK Drive defaced by vandals

SAN FRANCISCO — In San Francisco, a recently completed JFK Drive mural in Golden Gate Park was vandalized overnight.

Mural on JFK Drive vandalized
Mural on JFK Drive vandalized.


The work originally read: “We are on native land.” It was created by a group of local artists who wanted to pay tribute to local history in the Bay Area.

On Friday morning, one of the artists discovered that the painting had been covered in black paint and an inscription that read, “There is no such thing.”

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The artists told KPIX they will not be deterred by what they called a “cowardly, racist act” and that their mission to educate must continue.

The American Indian Cultural District designed and funded the mural. Sharaya Souza of the organization said they were not surprised by the vandalism because they received negative feedback immediately

“There were people who were like, ‘You’re just trying to steal the land and the Indians aren’t here and the indigenous people don’t exist!'” So I knew that was something that that statement contained. There was potential for people to come and really show where we are and that there is a lot of truth and healing that needs to be done,” Souza said.

She said the organization has also received a lot of positive feedback about the mural and that they are committed to keeping it in place.

Souza also noted that its presence in Golden Gate Park is an honor to the original owners of the land: the hawks, coyotes, trees and plants.

The mural is also part of the Indigenize SF project, which uses murals and walking tours to tell the stories of San Francisco’s indigenous people.

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