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Tuna sculpture recovered

Tuna’ sculpture recovered

Tuna’ by Bing Dawe in the Auckland Botanic Gardens Threatened Native Plants Garden

A $30,000 bronze sculpture stolen from the Auckland Botanic Gardens last weekend has been recovered.

Auckland Botanic Gardens Manager Jack Hobbs says police alerted them to the find on Monday evening.

“Our team informed scrap metal merchants around the region yesterday morning and one contacted police as soon as ‘Tuna’ was brought to their yard. We appreciate their quick action on this, enabling police to start investigating straight away.

“Police are now following up with the people involved.

“Unfortunately the sculpture has been returned badly damaged and we will need to consult with the artist as to its repair.

“However, we are very grateful to have ‘Tuna’ back and are humbled by the outpouring of support over this incident from our communities,” he says.

The artwork, titled ‘Tuna’, by renowned Christchurch artist Bing Dawe, was part of the 2013/14 Sculpture in the Gardens exhibition and was purchased for the Gardens’ permanent collection by the Friends of the Auckland Botanic Gardens.

About ‘Tuna’
• By Christchurch sculptor Bing Dawe
• Appeared in Sculpture in the Gardens 2013-14
• Made from carved wood, painted steel and bronze
• Bronze element is 600mm tall, mounted on a spiral turned wooden base. It weighs 90kg.
• It was priced at $30,000 in the exhibition and purchased by the Friends of the Auckland Botanic Gardens at the exhibition’s opening in early November 2013.

About the theft
• Bolts were sawn through and the bronze part of the sculpture was removed overnight on Sunday 20 July.


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