Mermaid statue with ‘huge arse’ deemed ‘too provocative’ by enraged locals

While Italy is known for its glamorous women this might be a step too far, as the creation of a mermaid statue with sizable assets has caused controversy.

The sculpture, which takes centre stage in a fishing village located in beautiful Puglia in the south of the country, has been deemed "too provocative".

The giant figurine of an ocean temptress was crafted by talented students at the Luigi Rosso art school in Monopoli, before being placed in a square dedicated to revolutionary scientist Rita Levi-Montalcini.

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And while it's yet to be officially inaugurated, photos of the installation leaked online prompting people to mockher behind, with even Bari-based actor Tiziana Schiavarelli getting involved in the action.

Alarmed with what she'd seen, the 62-year-old actress took to Facebook to claim that a friend had: "Rightly expressed some perplexity about this monument."

She said: “It looks like a mermaid with two silicone breasts and, above all, a huge arse never seen before on a mermaid. At least not any I know.”

Luckily for the students, Schiavarelli didn't have an issue with them or the council — in actual reality, she found the idea of a big-bummed mermaid becoming part of the sightseeing experience for holidaymakers quite a humorous prospect.

She added: “But I am very amused by this thing … who knows if it will become a further attraction for tourists."

Stunned by the reaction, the school's headteacher Adolfo Marciano defended the artwork, saying it was a fitting “tribute to the great majority of women who are curvy".

He revealed that the mayor had recruited the students to make a series of statues for the town, with one embodying the theme of the sea.

Marciano told The Guardian: "The students got together and came up with the idea of a mermaid. The council was shown the scale model and said it was good, and then decided the completed sculpture would be placed in the square.

"You see adverts on television with models who are very thin, but the mermaid is like a tribute to the great majority of women who are curvy, especially in our country. It would have been very bad if we had represented a woman who was extremely skinny."

In addition to the mermaid, on Monday the students will reveal another statue they've crafted, which'll pay homage to the victims of workplace accidents.

Marciano said: “This is much more important than the mermaid."

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