For a few hours yesterday, the popular and controversial Fearless Girl bronze statue on Wall Street, who faces off against the iconic Charging Bull, endured having her left leg urinated on by Pissing Pug (so named by the public). Made crudely out of papier-mâché and painted bronze, the addition was created and installed, guerrilla-style, by an artist named Alex Gardega, who removed the dog not long after he installed it. He claims the pug was meant as a protest to the crass and corporatized feminism he feels Fearless Girl embodies, as well as a show of support for the artist Arturo Di Modica, who created Charging Bull. (Di Modica claims Fearless Girl is disrespectful of his longstanding bull sculpture and is seeking damages from the City of New York.)
Gardega removed his pug in the face of public backlash, which didn’t take long to surface. As for the pug’s not-so-graceful lines, he says (via the New York Post): “I decided to build this dog and make it crappy to downgrade the statue, exactly how the girl is a downgrade on the bull.” Public opinion made out that Gardega’s gesture was misplaced, and tone-deaf to the symbolic feminist success of Fearless Girl. Via Hyperallergic: “The dog suffered some blows while it was up: Gardega told Gothamist that passersby kicked his sculpture and attempted to remove it, compelling him to take it away after a mere handful of hours.”
In the meantime, Mayor de Blasio has granted Fearless Girl permission to stay in place until next May.
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