Controversial Aldeburgh beach sculptures look set to be removed

Anthony Gormley statues on Aldeburgh beach Picture: CHARLOTTE BOND

Plans to keep the sculptures on the beach have been withdrawn - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND/PA

Controversial beach sculptures in Aldeburgh based on work by artist Sir Antony Gormley look set to be removed - after a planning application to allow them to stay there was withdrawn.

Sir Antony himself raised a formal objection to Caroline Wiseman's sculptures - known as Oval, Peg, Penis and Snowman - which were placed on the beach in August last year.

A letter sent by a representative of the artist said the installation was "not authorised", while the sculptures gained national attention after they were likened to sex toys and excrement. 

The artist also complained about their presentation and the fact they had been incorrectly labelled. 

"It is a misrepresentation of four works he has designed as bollards and which should only ever be seen that context, as per the streets of Peckham, London or the grounds of the Angel of the North, Gateshead," said Sir Antony's representative. 

Sir Antony also wanted it to be made clear that the pieces were not the originals but copies that could be purchased by garden designers. 


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Ms Wiseman, who put in the application to East Suffolk Council, said last week that she was disappointed by Sir Antony's response to the plans 

"It's going to be sad not having them on the beach," said Ms Wiseman.

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Ms Wiseman confirmed that the sculptures have been bought and that all the money raised from their sale would go towards refurbishing the nearby Lookout Tower, which Ms Wiseman runs. 

Before the application was withdrawn, it had received a mixed response from the public.

Of the 23 comments placed on the application on the council's website, 13 were in favour and 10 against. 

Some described the sculptures remaining as "being an asset to the town", while others raised concerns about the potential trip hazard posed by the sculptures. 

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