20 Bizarre Works of Public Art from All Over the World


[Editor’s note: While your Flavorwire editors take a much-needed holiday break, we’ll spend the next two weekends revisiting some of our most popular features of the year. This post was originally published September 11, 2011.] Maybe it’s just us, but we feel like we’ve been seeing a whole lot of strange public art in recent months: for instance, Claes Oldenburg’s newest project, an enormous paintbrush, was unveiled last month in Philadelphia, Florentijn Hofman’s Big Yellow Rabbit was erected this summer, and a huge Marilyn Monroe sculpture was recently unveiled in Chicago (she also just turned up with an ugly tattoo — that’s adolescent sculptures for you). We can’t say we don’t like the idea of weirder and weirder public art popping up all over the world, so we thought we’d round up a few of our favorite examples here. Click through to see our gallery of bizarre public art, and let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorite exhibits in the comments!

42-foot tall toy rabbit by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, Örebro, Sweden, 2011. [via]

Möbius, created by art and design firm Eness for the city of Melbourne, Australia, is a kinetic sculpture whose movement is undetectable by the naked eye — the only way to see it move is via time-lapse video. [via]

Urs Fischer’s Untitled (Lamp/Bear), New York, NY, 2011. (catch it now, this is its last month in the city!) [via]

Anish Kapoor’s Cloud Gate (otherwise known as the Bean), Chicago, IL, 2006. A classic, but regardless, it’s pretty darn weird. [via]

Surreal 3D graffiti by Polish artist Krystian Czaplicki, also known as Truth. [via]

Gundam Robot, Tokyo, Japan, 2009. [via]

Enormous cows made of car parts by Helsinki-based sculptor Miina Äkkijyrkkä. [via]

Fountain of the Virtues, created by Benedikt Wurzelbauer in 1589, Nuremberg, Germany [via]

Claes Oldenburg’s 5-story Paint Torch, Philadelphia, 2011. [via]

Tony Tasset’s Eye, Chicago, IL, 2010. [via]

Charles La Trobe statue by Charles Robb, Melbourne, Australia. [via]

Oliver Voss’s Riesen-Nixe or Badenixe (“Grand Mermaid” or “Bathing Beauty”), Alster Lake, Hamburg, Germany, 2011. [via]

Seward Johnson’s Forever Marilyn, Chicago, IL, 2011. [via]

Henk Hofstra’s Art Eggcident, Leeuwarden, Netherlands, 2008. [via]

César Baldaccini’s Le Pouce (“The Thumb”), 1965.

Klaus Weber’s The Big Giving, London, UK, 2007. [via]

Suspended Rhino, Potsdam, Germany. [via]

Douglas Coupland’s Digital Orca, Vancouver, BC, 2009. [via]

Jaume Plensa’s interactive video sculpture Crown Fountain, 2004. Chicago, IL.

Mehmet Ali Uysal’s giant clothespin, Liege, Belgium. [via]