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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 June, 2005, 06:56 GMT 07:56 UK
Huge table gives food for thought
The Writer, by Giancarlo Neri
The sculpture is a tribute to the loneliness of writing
A table and chair the size of a house have been captivating visitors to north London's Hampstead Heath.

The 30ft (9m) sculpture, The Writer, will be on Parliament Hill for four months before returning to Italy.

The tribute to the loneliness of writing is meant to inspire visitors to the heath, which has associations with writers Keats and Coleridge.

Leslie Mare, from the Corporation of London which runs the heath, said: "People seem to love it or hate it".

Giancarlo Neri, who used to play soccer for New York Apollos in the seventies, chose the heath, one of London's most popular parks, after hearing of its artistic heritage.

The Naples-born artist used six tons of steel and 1,000lb of wood to create the giant sculpture.

It's almost a reminder of the heath's hidden heroes
Leslie Mare
Corporation of London

He said he wants people to interact with it, using it as a picnic spot or using the legs as goal posts.

When it was on display in Rome two homeless people were said to have lived underneath it.

Ms Mare told BBC News: "People talk about it, look at it, some people have even graffiti'd on it but it's really engaged people.

"It's almost a reminder of the heath's hidden heroes, and hopefully will encourage new young budding artists and writers."

The sculpture will be officially unveiled at a party on the heath on Wednesday, during the first week of Art Fortnight London.

See the sculpture and hear from the artist


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