Who is Akse? Meet the street artist behind Marcus Rashford's mural

Eve Edwards July 13, 2021
Who is Akse? Meet the street artist behind Marcus Rashford's mural
Photo by Kenny Brown/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

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The mural of Marcus Rashford in Withington, Manchester was defaced after England’s defeat in the Euro 2020 finals. Locals have since showered the mural in supportive notes to cover up the vandalism.

Notes and drawings with the words “role model”, “wonderful human” and “hero” have been attached to the wall.

Greater Manchester Police were alerted to the racially-aggravated damage done to the mural at 02:50 BST on 12 July 2021. They have since launched an investigation.

But who is the street artist behind the mural of the young football star?

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Photo by Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images

Who is Akse?

Akse is a street artist and member of the P19 crew, according to his Instagram bio.

Discussing his work, Akse says: “I’m a Street Artist based in Manchester UK and have been painting murals since 1992. I have focused on photo-realistic portraits over the last 15 years.”

“As a Street Artist I aspire to bring inspiration to the local community through the subjects I paint,” Akse continues.

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Akse and the Marcus Rashford mural

The mural was made as part of the Withington Walls Project, a community street art project aiming to reinvigorate the local area. The organisation commissions local artists to paint the shutters and walls in Withington, Manchester.

All the artworks are funded by donations. You can donate to keep the project afloat on their website.

Akse completed the project in just a week, finishing his piece on 10 November 2020. Rashford was chosen as a subject given his connection to the local area – he is from Manchester – and after his success last year campaigning to end child food poverty in the UK.

Akse’s mural of Rashford is located on Moorfield Street on the side of the Coffee House Café.

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How to donate to repair Akse’s mural

Withington Walls have organised a CrowdFunder to repair Akse’s mural of Marcus Rashford. Already, they have reached over £33,000 in donations. This figure is correct as of publication date.

You can check out the CrowdFunder here.

They released an accompanying statement: “The England team may have lost, but they have done us proud on and off the pitch. This team has shown us the nation we can be. They have proved that diversity is our strength.”

“Any additional funds raised beyond the repair costs  will likely be spent on funding CCTV coverage, protective paint or further artworks in the village. Any funding raised beyond those needs will be donated to anti-racism and food bank projects,” they concluded.

Euro 2020 Reaction: THANK YOU ENGLAND

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Euro 2020 Reaction: THANK YOU ENGLAND
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Eve Edwards is a staff writer for The Focus who has been with GRV Media since April 2019. Having gained a BA (Hons) in History from the University of Bristol, Eve joined GRV starting out as a writer for Reality Titbit before making her way over to HITC. With a passion for music, TV, and cultural news, Eve eventually found a home at The Focus. Eve spent 2021-2022 freelancing for GRV Media while she completed a Masters in Music Performance, and brings her wide array of interests to the company in her written work. In Eve's spare time you'll find her working her way through the day's Wordle, Heardle, and Quordle, or struggling to complete The Guardian's cryptic crossword.