Do you remember the 6 foot phallus that was mysteriously erected in the Alps? Yes, it never went away – in fact, it’s even stranger than before.
When someone roughly draws a penis on a public structure, we usually roll our eyes – Maybe we pretend we don’t see it – and move on. When you are me, you laugh because the classics never go out of style.
But if an anonymous hiker with exceptional artistic flair (and probably a very large cart) built a massive 6 foot tall wooden penis Statue along the slopes of the Austrian Ötscher summit, the world took notice – and did not look away.
By and large, no one was very angry, most were just in awe – I mean, an erection this size will impress anyone. But how did someone drag this huge piece of wood stiffly up a mountain? And how did no one see Whodunnit?
The caper was as fantastic as the gag itself. Not only did no one accuse the artist of vandalism, the locals also wanted to congratulate them. Andreas Buder, managing director of the Ötscherlift ski area, even went that far Offer a free season ski pass when the person came forward behind the penis.
They have not. And so we all accepted two truths: that the scandalous sculptor would remain a mystery, and that ultimately, through a powerful snowfall and stubborn winds, the statue would suffer the same fate as all erections – an inevitable and brief fall meaning.
It just didn’t quite happen. And since the statue’s breathtaking discovery in 2017, things have only gotten more puzzling.
What happened to the wooden penis statue?
When I reached out to Marika Roth on Facebook, I really didn’t expect to hear anything back. Roth was credited with discovering the statue – at least she was the first to post pictures of it on social media. But would she want to rehash this ridiculous story for me now? At best, I guessed, I would get a brief but polite “No, thank you”.
When I received the notification she replied to, I was surprised.
“Hello Adam. The old statue no longer exists, ”she wrote back.
“… in its original form,” the message continued. “It’s a bear – the Ötscher bear [it] has been.”
The Ötscher bear statue with the dog Anton; Photo credit: Marika Roth
That’s right – not only did the statue not fall over, it also stands as proud as ever. In addition, someone made very intricate improvements to the sculpture. It’s a 6 foot tall bear now – and a good one at that.
Photo credit: Marika Roth
But still nobody knows who is responsible for it. Furthermore, the bear photographed by Roth appears to be just the latest version of this bewildering mountain wonder. In 2018, about a year after Roth’s discovery, Redditors became in / r / slightly interesting posted an image of the penis statue that we can best describe as the early stages of its transformation.
Photo credit: Norbert Oberndorfer
Sure it’s a bear. But it looks more like a giant penis wearing cheap bear disguise than the actual work of art that Roth showed me. Austrian publication today wrote the pictures of Bär V 1.0 Norbert Oberndorfer. And while it is unclear when this statue became the statue it is today, Roth told me that it is still standing.
So the riddle remains for the time being – albeit with a completely new twist. And that’s a good thing because we couldn’t “endure” another penis pun anyway.