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Hundreds of people are demanding the removal of the world’s tallest ceramic statue, which was built at a cost of £80,000 after labeling the artwork a ‘kebab’ and ‘an affront to God’.
‘Earth Goddess’ was created by artist Sandy Brown to celebrate the heritage of Chinese clay in St Austell, Cornwall.
It was unveiled on June 25 this year, but locals have relentlessly mocked the 11.5-meter-tall ‘eyesore’ – even nicknamed it ‘The Pork Sword’, comparing it to with a kebab.
Hundreds have signed a petition to remove the world’s tallest ceramic statue in Cornwall
‘Eyesore’: Critics of the artwork, only unveiled in June, describe it as a ‘kebab’
The statue of the Earth Goddess took artist Sandy Brown three years to complete at a cost of £80,000
Costing £80,000, the statue aimed to put the city ‘on the map’ after three years of construction, but a petition has now been launched to have it removed.
So far, 460 people have signed the petition calling for the artwork to be removed “with immediate effect,” with one person calling it “an affront to God.”
The online petition was started by Scott Moran, who said it has also been shared with Cornwall Council, although the council was not involved in the project.
Suggesting it would be a good local hangout, one man said, “Meet me by the pigsword in town.”
Another added: ‘It looks like a kebab – it’s become a bit of a disgrace.’
Among those who signed the petition was a resident who called it an “offense to god.”
One resident said: ‘A commissioned work of art should not have any religious connotation which is now imposed on the City of St Austell.
“This is not only an insult to the public, but also to God. Just imagine how much good could come out of those £80,000 feeding and housing the homeless.’
Another resident added: ‘I don’t believe this ‘image’ represents the city or its heritage.
‘Not representative’: one critic said the artwork did not honor the city or its heritage
‘The Chinese clay industry could have been better represented and I don’t want to be confronted with what an ‘earth goddess’ should be every time I walk through Aylmer Square.
“I hope this petition is successful and that the statue will be taken down soon.”
Another said: ‘Our city is named after a saint of the Christian faith, not a so-called earth goddess.
What a waste of money in these times of personal financial difficulties for so many. In a way I’m glad it doesn’t claim to represent the saint, as it would be a total misrepresentation of all the monks they stood for.”
And another resident said it would be better to have something to pay tribute to D-Day veteran Harry Billinge, who lived in the town and died in April: ‘St Austell doesn’t need a pagan idol watching over the town. inhabitants.
“The city would be better off with a statue honoring a great man of God like Harry Billinge. A humble man who has given so much to the city of St Austell and his country.’
Described online as resembling a “giant Native American totem,” the statue is the crowning piece of the Austell Project’s Whitegold Ceramic Art Trail.
The project aims to ‘work with creative people, to create innovative and activated public spaces that use art and design to celebrate the culture of the clay country, contributing to a sense of place’.
The 11.5-meter-tall statue was intended to ‘make visual contact with the rich Chinese clay heritage of St Austell’
Standing taller than two double-decker buses, the statue was designed by Mrs Brown to ‘make visual contact with the rich Chinese clay heritage of St Austell’.
While some admired the design, many locals posted the image online, with one woman posting: ‘Probably the most laughable thing in Cornwall. What a total joke.
‘Did the residents really pay for this? Kinda actually says it all about the decision makers.’
St Austell and Newquay MP Steve Double has also joined the debate.
He said: ‘I appreciate that art is subjective.
“I understand that there may be people who like this image, but clearly there are many who don’t.
“Personally, if I were involved in choosing something that reflects St Austell’s identity, heritage and history, I think it’s fair to say I wouldn’t have chosen this design.”
Artist Sandy Brown explains: ‘I really wanted this sculpture to make an impression and visually align with St Austell’s rich Chinese clay heritage.
‘The Earth Goddess is made of the product, clay, which is so inherent in this place.
“I hope she celebrates the city’s unique history and represents our collective and eternal roots with the environment, nature and Mother Earth.”