University Students Slam Poorly-Placed Statue For Suicide Implications [Video]By Emily Marks, UniversityHerald Reporter
Students at British institution University of East Anglia (UEA) slammed an art installation for its suicide implications. The provocative statue by popular artist Antony Gormley showed a person placed on the edge of the library roof seemingly about to jump off the building.
Some criticized it, saying that it was a "poor choice" since it might encourage students to commit suicide. There are others, though, who mistake it for a real person, the Daily Eastern Press reported.
A spokesperson for the university defended Gormley's work, stating that it was "thought-provoking and offer both spectacle and surprise." The statue is one of three sculptures that is part of a Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts project. Gormley is best known for his works: the Angel of the North in Gateshead and Another Place on Crosby Beach in Liverpool.
One student described the provocative placement of the statue as "tactless" especially since it was done during exam season. The latest additions were said to be part of bigger plans to expand the sculpture trail at UEA, which also includes works by Liliane Lijn and Henry Moore.
According to BBC, UEA said in a statement that the reaction of the university community has been "overwhelmingly positive." They expect the figures to become "much-loved focal points" in the campus.
Gormley has also had previous works that had previously provoked fearful reactions. His Event Horizon work is a touring exhibition that features human forms placed on top of buildings. Back in 2010, New York police received frantic calls from people who mistakenly saw the human-shaped sculptures on top of tall buildings as people who were about to jump.
It was previously reported that universities and colleges in the U.S. are struggling to keep up with the rise in demand for mental health care. This has led to a lot of students being stuck on waiting lists and not receiving the help they asked for. A petition was created urging universities to do something about the lack of proper mental health services in American campuses.