The destruction of the mural has been condemned by the Salvadoran government and by the family of Fernando Llort. The family of Llort says the artist is deeply saddened, and that he had not been advised in advance nor given the opportunity to retire his most important artistic work in dignity. The mural, completed in 1997, was an homage to the 1992 Peace Accords which ended El Salvador's civil war.
The Catholic church has stated that parishioners had been consulted and that they were in agreement with the decision. Images of what will replace the Llort mural on the facade of the cathedral have not been released, but press reports indicate that it will be some sort of painting or sculpture of the Divine Savior of the World, patron of San Salvador.
On his website, Llort had this description of the work on the Cathderal:
The Catholich Church from El Salvador asked me to design the facade for the Cathedral. This has been one of the most inspiring artistic moments of my life, because it meant to me that I was putting my art on a very important symbol of my country, with a huge historical value. It was a work that took us (me and a group of artisans) around 1 year to finish.
The Facebook page of the Fernando Llort Foundation was filled with expressions of sadness and solidarity. Another Facebook page, Indignados por El Mural, is rapidly filling with pictures and comments and anger at the blindness of the church to the meaning of this artwork.
These pictures show what the mural has been reduced to: