Back in mid-August of this year, I had featured a house in Ballwin that had been the center of around a decade of legal and municipal wrangling due to the decoration of the front yard by the owner. We had noticed several months ago that the metal components of the display had been removed, likely for its scrap value, while the broken concrete and other not-easily-recycled materials had remained. I had noted various utility and surveyors’ markings around the property, and had wondered what their purposes had been. The answer came when we revisited the site again recently; coming around the curve, we were greeted with the site of backhoe, and a completely demolished and cleared lot.
I did a little investigating, and determined that a bank based out of New York had foreclosed on the mortgage on the property. I find it interesting, after years of debate on the nature of Modern art, property and neighbor rights and the role of government in regulating citizens’ First Amendment rights, that in the end, it was the invisible hand of a large bank, located a thousand miles away from St. Louis which finally passed judgment on the situation.