Beds, Herts & Bucks

Marc Quinn 'giant baby' baffles Royston residents

Very large sculpture of a baby Image copyright Ian Jeffries
Image caption "100ft baby invades Royston", resident Ian Jeffries wrote when he first spotted the sculpture in early September

A giant baby sculpture by artist Marc Quinn left local people baffled when it turned up next to a skip on an industrial estate.

It is an edition made by Quinn of his painted bronze and steel sculpture Planet, which is 30ft (9.2m) long.

On social media residents have likened it to the "marshmallow man" and talked of a "baby invasion" in Royston, Hertfordshire.

The artist's studio said the "editioned work" is at a depot for "maintenance".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Quinn's "Planet" was first displayed in the grounds of Chatsworth House in Derbyshire in 2008

Quinn's original six tonne "Planet" was commissioned by Chatsworth House in Derbyshire in 2008, where it was displayed in the grounds.

It was exhibited in 2012 at the Musée Océanographique de Monaco before moving to its permanent home in the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore in 2013.

The massive Royston baby might seem hard to miss, but it is usually covered with a marquee-like structure or tarpaulin.

However, it has been spotted in its full nakedness several times by people walking through the industrial estate.

"Anyone know why there is a giant baby wrapped in plastic on the industrial estate?" wrote a member on a local Facebook page, having spotted the structure earlier this week.

Image copyright Mark Sapsford
Image caption The baby was on full view earlier this week...
Image caption It was covered up after the BBC had asked about it

Others who spotted it were "intrigued" while one "screeched with laughter" at the sight.

It is being housed at an art storage and transportation company which was responsible for installing the original Planet at the Monaco exhibition.

A spokesman said he could not comment on what the sculpture was doing there, citing "client confidentiality".

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Quinn with his sculpture at the Musée Océanographique de Monaco where it was displayed in 2012

A representative of Quinn said the Royston baby is an "editioned work by Marc Quinn", adding: "The work was undergoing maintenance... as is common to all painted bronze sculpture."

Image copyright Google
Image caption In August Google street view captured the yard - it is thought the baby is behind the white structure in the centre

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