Seven Arrested for Defacing Anish Kapoor’s Iconic ‘Cloud Gate’ in Chicago

The artist’s public sculpture was spray-painted with graffiti

Anish Kapoor, Cloud Gate, installation view, 2018. Courtesy: Filippo Diotalevi


Seven people have been taken into custody after vandals defaced Anish Kapoor’s sculpture, Cloud Gate (2006) (informally known as ‘The Bean’), installed at Millennium Park in Chicago. 

The sculpture was reportedly found covered in graffiti on Tuesday morning after police responded to a call shortly after midnight related to trespassing. 

The 66-feet-high 110-ton metallic sculpture was tagged with ‘35th Crew’ in white spray paint. The walls of the nearby Cancer Survivors Garden in Maggie Daley park were also found to have been vandalized with similar markings. The motivation behind the graffiti remains unknown.

City mayor Lori Lightfoot commented: ‘There are some things that should be sacred. Millennium Park and ‘The Bean’ have been an important, iconic heart of who we are as Chicago from the time that park opened [...] It is unbelievably unacceptable for somebody to be defacing something like that.’

Late last year, Kapoor declared ‘victory’ after The National Rifle Association (NRA) removed an image of Cloud Gate (2006) from a controversial promotional video. ‘This is a victory not just in defence of the copyright of my work, but it is also a declaration that we stand with those who oppose gun violence in America and elsewhere,’ the artist said in a statement

The graffiti has since been removed by city authorities. The suspects have yet to be charged and the investigation into the attack is ongoing. 

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