Three sculptures valued at over £300,000 have been returned to Dalston Eastern Curve Garden in Hackney, London almost a year after they went missing. The artworks had been donated by Hackney based artist STIK at the opening of the Garden a decade ago and were stolen last November in a coordinated night-time raid only weeks after a similar sculpture raised £150,000 in a charity sale at Christie’s.
There has been a growing trend of thefts of STIK’s street works due to the exponential increasing market value of his individual pieces. The three sculptures stolen from the Garden which were listed on the Art Loss Register, two of which were badly damaged in the raid, were returned in June 2019 by a concerned collector who wished to remain anonymous.
“We were devastated when the sculptures were stolen, they have been with us since the beginning and we are overjoyed to have them back” said Marie Murray, co-director of the Curve Garden. “I sometimes authenticate the sale of a public artwork if the proceeds go back to the community they were created for but this was not one of these occasions” said STIK who recently destroyed a large haul of unauthenticated public artworks pulled from the market as a protest against the misappropriation of public artworks.