The Dutch are known for their liberal and ‘open’ mind regarding sex, at least that’s something the whole world seems to think, in reality there are no red light districts all over, people are not having sex all the time and we don’t sell sex toys in the supermarket. What a wonderful place the Netherlands would be :-). Our open mind to sex has recently been tested by the people of Rotterdam, the local government bought a huge Gnome with a large sex toy in his hand called ‘Santa Claus’ from the American artist Paul McCarthy.
The artwork was acquired by the local government in December last year, one of the representatives is a huge fan of McCarthy, and until that time the 6 meter large statue was kept hidden from the public eye. Basically they did not know where to put it within the city, they intended it for a public square but the citizens of Rotterdam did not like the idea of looking at a large Gnome with a buttplug the whole day.
Finally they found a place for it, a rather ‘public safe’ one, behind the museum walls of Boijmans Van Beuningen. I guess Paul McCarthy must have been following the development around the placement of his Santa with a huge smile, his work is intended to shake up the public and it certainly did in the city of Rotterdam.
More interesting reads about Paul McCarthy: