An 18-carat solid gold toilet, titled ‘America’ that was kept at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, United Kingdom was stolen. The expensive art piece is still missing, and the hunt for it by Thames Valley Police is on. According to media reports, the toilet is a work of art by the 58-year-old Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan. After Blenheim Palace informed about the missing art piece, Cattelan in a statement praised the thieves who had stolen it. He jokingly asked the robbers to let him know, “How it feels to pee on Gold?”
The golden toilet worth as some estimates, up to $1.25 million (above Rs 8.80 crore). It was placed and connected to the plumbing of the building. Hence, its removal caused extensive damage. Blenheim Palace, the UNESCO World Heritage Site and the birthplace of Winston Churchill announced the tragic incident through its official Twitter handle. The palace further informed that it would be closed for the day.
Here's the Palace's Official Statement:
Following the Thames Valley Police statement we can confirm ‘America’, the art piece by Maurizio Cattelan has been stolen in the early hours of this morning.
We are saddened by this extraordinary event, but also relieved no-one was hurt.
— Blenheim Palace (@BlenheimPalace) September 14, 2019
As the news went out, Italian conceptual artist Cattelan praised the thieves as “great performers.” The artist through an official statement joked, “Dear thieves, please, if you are reading this, let me know how much you like the piece and how it feels to pee on gold,” as quoted by media reports.
The golden toilet America was installed as just one part of an exhibition of Cattelan’s work, his first solo exhibition in the UK. The piece was put on a display at Sir Churchill’s birthplace, and visitors were allowed to book three-minute appointments to use the golden toilet. Thames Valley Police believe that at least two vehicles were used in the robbery. No injuries have been reported, and the palace is currently co-operating with a police investigation.