McCarthy’s controversial sculpture, Tree, has been vandalised in Place Vendrome – and the artist assaulted. Why are Parisians being so prudish? This is nowhere near his scandalous best
Anality is in the eye of the beholder. An inflatable sculpture by American artist Paul McCarthy has been vandalised – and the artist himself assaulted – after a flurry of outrage in Paris over a sculpture that is said to resemble a type of sex toy known, I am informed, as a butt plug.
I feel old fashioned that I had to be told that. The work is called Tree, and if I didn’t know about the accusation that it looks like a sex toy, I would probably have taken the title at face value. Well, perhaps not entirely. The chances of McCarthy erecting anything as innocent as a tree seem slight when you consider this surrealist’s oeuvre.