A new art installation has drawn ire from local residents for looking like a “giant dog poo”
Rory Milner / SWNS

A new piece of public art in a park has been likened to a giant dog poo as locals say it belongs in a litter tray.

‘The Loop’, a large wicker structure out of real willow, was erected at the Conningbrook Lakes estate in Ashford, Kent.

But while some fans of artist Julia Clarke called it “simply glorious”, others were less enthused.

One nearby local said: “I’m afraid to say it looks like a dog poo”, which was liked by hundreds of people on a Facebook post about the installation.

Ryan Kislingbury said: “They say art is a way of expressing yourself, I’m wondering if it reflects [Ms Clarke’s] opinion on building houses on the land that people enjoyed walking round.”

Rory Milner / SWNS

However, Frank Hall disagreed with the majority of comments. He said: “This looks nothing like a dog poo. Fox poo, on the other hand...”

Ms Clarke, who has previously exhibited her work at Kew Gardens and currently has pieces on display at the Cambridge Contemporary Art gallery, said the wicker structure was based on the theme of ‘explore’.

She said: “The Loop is an abstract form, handwoven from large willows on a steel frame aimed to entice you to explore further into the rest of the park.

“I would like visitors and residents to want to interact with the sculpture and engage with the space.

“I want them to be physically uplifted and to be able to step and walk through the sculptures, and see through them framing various views of the lakes and the parks around them.’’

Ashford Borough Council cabinet member Cllr Matthew Forest (Con) said: “Sitting at the entrance to the new Conningbrook Lakes development, The Loop sculpture summons residents and the community to stop and take a moment to enjoy the beautiful lakeside scenery, water and wildlife.

Rory Milner / SWNS

“The project recognises the important role artists play in contextualising new spaces and communities, bringing character and identity to enable a sense of belonging for residents and visitors alike.

“In addition, now more than ever, it reflects the importance of the natural world and our connection to it and how being in the natural environment can have a profound effect on our wellbeing.

“I am so pleased that this is just the first installation of a number which will be added to the development over the coming months for all to enjoy.”

SWNS reporting by Joe Morgan and Alex Jee

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