Wary of a Bob-Tail Nag, a German Town Wants to Pasture This Trojan Horse—elsewhere

updated 06/01/1981 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 06/01/1981 01:00AM

It looks like a horse all right, but how come it has only three legs and a door in the back and how come it's hollow? Because, says West German sculptor Jürgen Goertz, who made it, "I have had a satirical interest in animal forms ever since I read Orwell's Animal Farm. This Trojan horse is not warlike or nasty. It is a great inspirational design." Horse feathers, snort the burghers of Karlsruhe, whose art museum commissioned the $101,200 work to stand outside the State Theater but who now have second thoughts. "The Trojan horse is a sign of trickery and treachery," fumed one pol. Who knew it would be 22 feet high with plastic eyes, a copper belly capable of seating 12 and a huge wire brush for a tail? So there it stands—well, not there, actually, but in nearby Darmstadt, where the steed is on display until the dust settles and where many people, especially U.S. tourists, love it. Not surprising, says Goertz, 42, who has a track record of kinky animal sculptures. "Humor," he sighs, "is not part of German nature."

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