The London artist who created a triangular warning sign featuring the silhouette of an Orthodox Jewish man has apologized for any offence caused by its display.
Franck Allais, a freelance photographer, described the contentious sign that appeared near a synagogue in the Haredi Jewish enclave of Stamford Hill in north London, as an artistic project. He told the Guardian he intended the image to be a reflection of the local community and not an anti-Semitic statement.
“It was a project about crossing the road … how everyone is different, everyone has an identity,” he said. ” There is not only one sign in the street. I put more signs up in the street, but only this one got noticed. I am sorry for any offence caused.”
Mr. Allais said he was “left shaken” by the uproar his artwork had caused, telling the Guardian he had created other signs based on real people he saw crossing the road in the areas where the signs were later hung and photographed.
As Breitbart Jerusalem reported, the sign was first spotted on a Stamford Hill lamppost on Tuesday. A member of Jewish neighbourhood watch group Shomrim saw the sign with a red outline that traditionally denotes danger in British road signage and reported it to police.
Rabbi Herschel Gluck, president of Shomrim, told the Press Association he was happy with the clarification and apology offered: “I’m very pleased that he has apologised but rather surprised at his lack of sensitivity and knowledge that a sign like this could prove to be offensive.
“Especially with people who have been traumatised in recent history by similar signs barring them from professions and parks. You have to think about the people you are talking about and the type of message and type of meaning it would have for them.”
Follow Simon Kent on Twitter: Follow @SunSimonKent or e-mail to: email@example.com