NEW YORK • A statue of a naked Mr Donald Trump, complete with bulging belly and elaborately styled blonde hair, caused laughter and merriment in New York on Thursday until it was demolished by park wardens.
Hands clasped across an ample belly, the sculpture was unveiled in Union Square, gazing out across a busy street with a plaque that said: "The emperor has no balls."
Four other naked Trump statues appeared on Thursday in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Cleveland, according to social media posts. Indecline, a California-based company, released a video on its website showing statues of the controversial Republican presidential nominee being made.
But New York's Department of Parks and Recreation was unimpressed. Wardens ripped the statue from its base before using shovels to smash its feet and foam base to smithereens, and pry its metal platform from the ground.
"NYC Parks stands firmly against any unpermitted erection in city parks, no matter how small," a spokesman told Agence France- Presse in an e-mail in a comment that was widely shared on Twitter.
Throughout the morning, passers-by stopped to take photographs, pose for selfies and laugh at the depiction of the New York billionaire.
"It was funny. Everybody was... laughing and taking pictures," said Mr Rahshawn Gilmore, 22, who works in a nearby store. Although Mr Gilmore said he did not find the statue offensive, he admitted some might because children were "roaming around". "You could see his personal bits," he explained.
"That was great craftsmanship, because they're having a hard time taking it apart," he added, breaking into laughter.