Images of this bizarre phallic-looking potato monument have been doing the rounds on social media after it was erected at a village entrance to honour the community’s local spud.
The phallic potato was installed in the village of Xylofagou near Ayia Napa in Cyprus. Xylofagou is among a group of similar villages known as the ‘Kokkinochoria’ (‘Red Villages’), famous for growing vegetables, particularly potatoes, in red soil.
The sculpture is being built to honour the Red Villages ahead of the Potato Festival being held soon.
According to the Cyprus Mail, the statue is positioned next to the local stadium, the Olympos Xylofagou, and has been named ‘The Big Potato’.
However, images of the statue, which is still unfinished, have been doing the rounds on social media, with online critics saying that it does not look anything like a potato and is more phallic in appearance, with some even comparing it to a sex toy.
Xylofagou community leader George Tasou, who admits to organising the project, said it is a good thing that the statue is already attracting so much attention, adding: “There is no such thing as bad publicity.”
He said: “I wanted this potato to become a point of reference in the community, and I am glad as the defamation taking place is actually the best advert for us.”
The community leader added: “I am sure that all those who criticise the work will come here to be photographed with the potato.”
Tasou said he was inspired to create a statue honouring the local potato after seeing the Big Fish monument in Belfast.
After many netizens said the statue appears phallic, he pointed out that the monument is based on the elongated Spunta (seed potato) grown in the area.
Tasou added that the statue is still unfinished and will cost around EUR 8,000 (GBP 6,766) in total.
Describing how the monument will look when completed, he said: “Seating facilities will be added, while there will also be a refreshment facility in the area, obliged to fry and cook potatoes for the visitors.”
Tasou, who said the project has the full support of the Ministry of Tourism, added: “We are certain that it will become an attraction for thousands of tourists.”
Local comedian Stevie Georgiou said “we’ve managed to turn Xylofagou into the hosts of the 2021 International Penis Awards”, adding that he can “wholeheartedly say we are the laughing stock of Europe”.