Source - A New Zealand man's penile art could have him facing penal action.
Geoff Upson has been drawing very large, colourful penises around potholes in his home city of Auckland since 2018 to draw attention to a problem he says authorities are not taking seriously.
Now, Auckland Transport has taken legal action against the road safety campaigner, following a complaint over his artwork. Upson says he has given a formal statement to the police, and faces a fine or possible community service.
"I'm remaining optimistic that Auckland Transport will just fix the road and they will accept that the only reason I've drawn on the road is because the road was unsafe to start with," Upson told As It Happens host Carol Off. ...
"As we head into road safety week next week, Auckland Transport is actually looking forward to working positively with Mr. Upson," Auckland Transport spokesperson Natalie Polley said in an emailed statement on Monday. ...
He says he was inspired by a similar campaign by the U.K. street artist who goes by the name Wansky. In 2015, the anonymous artist began spray-painting giant penis shapes around the potholes in Greater Manchester. ...
Upson says the worst is at night, when it is difficult to see the potholes. He will often see drivers changing their tires on the side of the road.
"That's half the reason I do it is because it's saving ... drivers' wheels and their tires from damage," he said.
Upson estimates he's covered around 100 potholes.
And this, my fellow citizens, is how revolutions begin. This is the sound of, from every mountainside, freedom ringing. Of a people saying enough injustice is enough and they would rather face the wrath of a corrupt system than stand silent as it fails to meet the needs of the people its meant to serve another day.
So thank you. Both to Geoff Upson and the one they call Wanksy for inspiring him. On behalf of motorists everywhere, I can truly say we owe you a debt of gratitude. You are the the modern equivalent of the patriots who dumped the King's tea into Boston Harbor. Of Les Miserables who stormed the gates of the Bastille. You are Gandhi, walking to the sea to make his own salt. The anonymous freedom fighter who stood before a line of tanks in Tiananmen Square. And may the torch of liberty you two have lit with your spray cans and your ability to draw dicks ignite a fire that spreads throughout the world.
And you can spare us your platitudes and your bureaucratic claptrap, Auckland Transport spokesperson Natalie Polley. Your department is not "working positively with" Geoff Upson. You're working because of him. And only because of him. If were up to the people who are supposed to be keeping the roads fixed, and who get paid with taxes levied on cars and gas, babies would be bouncing out of their seats like dribbled basketballs and the sides of the highways would look like Fury Road from all the vehicles wrecked by these tire-blowing menaces you leave unfilled. If you were really "working" with Upson, you'd be pinning a medal on him. Or at least buying him a case of Foster's. Instead, you're prosecuting him. And persecuting him. For doing the right thing.
So let the inspiration of Wanksy and Upson go forth from this time and place to all parts of the globe. Sure, sometimes painting dongs on things is hilarious:
But sometimes, it's a symbol of liberty. This is how we are heard. This is how you spark action. With dicks. Big, unmistakable, unignorable green fluorescent, spray painted dicks. Let there never again be a pothole that does not have a wang of freedom and justice drawn around it. One dick come in the name of love. One dick come and go. One dick he to justify. One dick to overthrow.