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This genius tried to climb a $300,000 sculpture… and broke it

Today in: This is why we can’t have nice things.

In the city of Wellington, New Zealand, a man tried to climb the precariously-thin Len Lye Water Whirler sculpture, causing it to snap and fall on his head as he landed in the sea.

Fraser Ebbett, Wellington City Council waterfront specialist, told the New Zealand Herald that the man was being encouraged by onlookers.

“He’s climbed to the top and it’s bent right over. It’s obviously got to a point where it couldn’t hold his weight and has snapped at the base.

“He has proceeded to fall in the water and at the same time the pole has made contact with his head quite heavily and caused a bit of blood.”

Ebbett added that specialists had been sent to retrieve the pole from the bottom of the ocean, with the hopes that it can be reconstructed.

water whirler on the wellington seafront

Len Lye’s Water Whirler, before the incident.

According to Roger Horrocks, a trustee of The Len Lye Foundation and author of Len Lye’s biography, this is not the first time the sculpture has been damaged. However, local officials were reluctant to do anything about public access to it, despite requests.

“A sculpture like that has to be proofed against idiots – total idiots who want to destroy it,” he said.

We reckon it might be time for Wellington City Council to reconsider.

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