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Giant Rubber Duck in Taiwan Port Meant to Promote 'Peace and Harmony' Does Something Else Instead


"We want to apologise to the fans of the yellow rubber duck."

Image source: YouTube

For nearly two weeks, a giant rubber ducky has floated in a Taiwanese port until Tuesday when it met its demise, the cause of which is still unknown.

Installed in the port at Keelung by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, the yellow, 50-foot duck modeled off the bath toy simply deflated -- a sad fact when you consider that Hofman uses ducks as a symbol to promote "peace and harmony," according to NPR.

duck in port Image source: YouTube

duck in port Image source: YouTube

Watch this footage of the incident:

Focus Taiwan reported that it's unknown what caused the inflatable to burst, but it did note one witness saying she thought she saw an eagle hit the duck with its talons.

"We want to apologize to the fans of the yellow rubber duck," organizer Huang Jing-tai said, according to BBC. "We will carefully examine the duck to determine the cause."

This also isn't the first time a duck display has gone kaput in Taiwan. The news station reported that a similar rubber duck inflatable by the artist went down in November.

The rubber duck art installation was also surrounded by controversy prior to its destruction. Here's more on that from Focus Taiwan:

A dispute over copyrights involving merchandise sold by local vendors erupted even before that, leading Dutch artist and the man behind the Rubber Duck series Florentijn Hofman to decry the Keelung event as a "commercial circus."

Hofman, who had enthusiastically attended the premiers in Kaohsiung and Taoyuan, was conspicuously absent from the duck's opening day in Keelung.

The duck was later noticeably blackened by pollution from ships passing through the industrial area, leaving organizers scratching their heads for several days as to how to clean it.

The installation was supposed to remain in the port until Feb. 28, but it didn't even last to New Years day.

(H/T: NPR)



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