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Giant Rubber Duck in Hong Kong Harbour

For Monday Mellow Yellows, I thought I would share this unusual event that took place recently  in Hong Kong.

A giant Rubber Duck created by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman is towed along Hong Kong’s Victoria Habour, May 2, 2013. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

The duck is pretty well-travelled; he was in Sydney in January. It would be great to hear from anyone who has actually seen him on his travels.

Part 1, Reblogged from Giant rubber duck sails into Hong Kong harbour – Telegraph – by James Brooks, 2 May 2013:

Giant rubber duck sails into Hong Kong harbour

A six-storey high inflatable yellow rubber duck sailed into Hong Kong harbour today, to the delight of hundreds of onlookers.

The 16.5-metre-tall inflatable Rubber Duck art installation is seen at the Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong: Giant rubber duck sails into Hong Kong harbour

The 16.5-metre-tall inflatable Rubber Duck art installation is seen at the Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong Photo: PA

Conceived by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, the 54-foot tall creation dwarfed other craft as it was towed past the city’s iconic skyline by a tugboat.

Countless onlookers flocked to marvel at the duck, inspired by the classic bath-time toy, which has travelled to 13 cities in nine countries, including Brazil and Australia, since it began its epic journey in 2007.

Crowds began queuing as early as 6 am for a chance to see the inflatable creation and purchase a miniature replica toy.

“It takes me back to my childhood memories,” Peggy Shieh, 28, told Agence France Presse.

“I think it’s the last time I will see a rubber duck in Hong Kong. It has a message for peace but for me it’s just fun,” said Kathy Cheung, who took half a day off work in order to catch a glimpse of the art creation.

The duck’s designer claimed his creation, which will stay moored in Hong Kong till June 9, is intended to connect people with public art.

“It’s about connecting people, don’t take life for granted, your urban space for granted. You walk every day the same route to work, but look and stop going too fast,” Mr Hofman said.

Part 2: Reblogged from  Avian flu? Hong Kong’s rubber duck deflates | World news | – by Jonathan Kaiman in Beijing,, 15 May 2013:

Avian flu? Hong Kong’s rubber duck deflates

Bright yellow art installation in Victoria harbour sparks social media conspiracy theories to explain why it suddenly shrank

Hong Kong's Rubber Duck

Duck soup: Florentijn Hofman’s Rubber Duck floats – flattened – in Hong Kong’s Victoria harbour, prompting a slew of conspiracy theories. Photograph: Jerome Favre/EPA

A huge inflatable duck that has been floating in Hong Kong’s Victoria harbour for the past two weeks has been unexpectedly reduced to a puddle of yellow plastic, drawing howls of protest – and accusations of ‘fowl play’.

The 16.5m-high yellow piece of conceptual art, created by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, has drawn tens of thousands of visitors since it bobbed into town on 2 May. It is scheduled to be on display in Hong Kong until 9 June.

Floating Duck

Hong Kong’s duck in happier times. Photograph: Jessica Hromas/Getty Images

But on Tuesday night, the waterfront shopping mall Harbour City, which organised the exhibit, announced the duck’s imminent dismantling on its Facebook page. “Special announcement: attention, duck fans! The rubber duck needs some rest, and to undergo a quick body check. The rubber duck will resume its ‘duck’ shape in no time,” it said.

That didn’t stop microbloggers in mainland China from speculating on more likely reasons for the duck’s demise. By Wednesday afternoon’Big yellow duck loses air and collapses’ was the number one trending topic on Sina Weibo, China’s version of Twitter.

In a post that has been forwarded more than 8,000 times, user Huxiang Mountain Person proposed 10 tongue-in-cheek explanations, including: “Avian flu was too strong,” “Asia’s water quality was too rough,” and “It worked overtime for seven days in a row and suddenly died”.

Many Hong Kong residents were disappointed by its untimely leave of absence.

“The sky looks like it is crying for me – I took time off from work just to see the duck, now it is just a blob,” 45-year-old clerk Mirinna Chan told Agence France-Presse. “It’s really our childhood dream, because when we bathed as children, we would have one or two of the rubber ducks next to us.”

The installation, called Rubber Duck, has appeared in 13 cities since 2007, including Osaka, Sydney, São Paolo and Amsterdam.

2 replies »

  1. Awesome post, would love to see the duck in real life! I hope it was deflated deliberately by the artist and not damaged…I’ll be staying tuned 🙂


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