Iron men on the move

‘Suicide’ sculptures by British artist Anthony Gormley have been given the push by Austrian officials.

The 100 sculptures – identical to works in London and New York – show life-sized men standing on the edge of precipices over 100 square miles of peaks in Vorarlberg.

The local officials had only given permission for the statues that many branded an eyesore and a blot on the landscape to stand for two years – but a campaign was started by fans called Horizon Field to get the time extended.

But this week they admitted they had given up the battle as they would not be able to get through the red tape in the way of a renewal in time to save the figures.

“We unfortunately have no choice but to remove the sculptures,” said Andrea Kaufmann, a local culture committee councillor.

“They have been a great success, but we cannot renew the contract with the state and the landowners,” she added.

Horizon Field chairman Otto Huber said they had wanted an extension from July to September to make their application but the request was thrown out.

The disappointed mayor of the famous ski resort of Lech am Arlberg, Ludwig Muxel, who was a fan of the artworks said a “huge opportunity” had been lost.