West Virginia artist puts toilet in town center to protest lack of public artThe Art Dossier on April 23, 2012 with 0 Comments
Andrew Russeth from Gallerist NY wrote about a story that developed in West Virginia where an artist left a sculpture consisting of a toilet with three purple balloons on a pedestal in his town center. David Heatwole, an artist based in Martinsburg, West Virginia, said the sculpture was in protest of his city council’s lack of support of or commissions for public contemporary art. The pedestal was originally installed for a sculpture of Martinsburg’s founder, Major General Adam Stephan but officials had halted the project due to lack of funds.
Details from the local newspaper herald-mail.com reports:
Dangling from the toilet bowl was a “bill of sale” from “My Art Brokers” that was addressed to the city of Martinsburg for one “crappy work of art” for $50,000 to be payable upon receipt of work.
“Note: Thank for your support of the arts — David Johnson!,” the fake receipt read.
Heatwole placed the sculpture just 12 hours after his presentation in the city council meeting where he proposed that the city hold “a competition to select a sculpture idea of a contemporary nature for the pedestal and reconsider placing a historical monument there altogether.”
City officials did not like Heatwole’s sculpture and had it removed last Wednesday morning and fined the artist $500 for littering.
Read the full article here.