Giant artwork stolen in 'stupid prank' found

21:42, Nov 26 2012
Shirleyann Gray
HARD TO SHIFT: Shirleyann Gray's giant wire artwork was stolen from her Riccarton home over the weekend.

A giant wire artwork worth $1000 has been found in an Ilam flat after going missing at the weekend.

A Riccarton resident said the 1.5-metre-wide ball was taken from her home on Saturday night.

After reading about it on, someone rang her to say they had seen the artwork in an Ilam flat.

She and her husband planned to pick up the artwork.

"We're very happy to have it back," she said.

The ball, made of galvanised wire and worth about $1000, was created by Tekapo artist John van Beek.

It was behind a fence but was visible through the slats.


"It would have taken about four guys to lift it over the fence," she said.

"It's pretty heavy and an awkward shape to move."

She believed the most likely scenario was that a group of students had taken the ball as a "stupid prank".

A security team from the University of Canterbury had searched the area earlier but had not found anything.

The woman purchased the artwork to replace some of her earthquake-damaged work as it could roll around and not break.

"We never envisaged that it could or would be stolen."

The Press