Police probing the theft of a solid gold toilet at Blenheim Palace have arrested a 35-year-old man.
The 18-carat gold toilet, entitled America, was part of an exhibition by controversial Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan.
It was stolen soon after it was unveiled at the palatial home in Oxfordshire, the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, on September 14.
The man, 35, from London was arrested this morning on suspicion of handling stolen goods. He remains in police custody.
Police probing the theft of a solid gold toilet at Blenheim Palace have arrested a 35-year-old man
It was stolen soon after it was unveiled at the palatial home in Oxfordshire, the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, on September 14
The toilet was previously exhibited at the Guggenheim Museum in New York where 100,000 people queued to use it.
A Thames Valley Police spokesman said today: ‘Officers have arrested a man in connection with an incident of burglary which occurred at Blenheim Palace in Woodstock.
‘A 35-year-old man from London was arrested this morning on suspicion of handling stolen goods and remains in police custody.
‘The arrest is in connection with an incident on September 14 this year, when a golden toilet was stolen from Blenheim Palace.
‘Previously in the investigation, a 66-year-old man from Evesham, Worcester, has been arrested on suspicion of burglary and a 35-year-old man from Cheltenham, Gloucester, has been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to burgle.
‘A 35-year-old man, a 34-year-old man and a 36-year-old woman, all from Oxford, were arrested on suspicion of conspiring to commit a burglary other than a dwelling. All five people have been released under investigation.’
Pictured: Blenheim Palace in Blenheim, Oxfordshire
Maurizio Cattelan: Artist who lampooned Hitler and the Pope and made 100,000 queue for the toilet
Pictured: Maurizio Cattelan at Monanie de Paris in 2016
Maurizio Cattelan is one of the most controversial contemporary artists of our time, notorious for his satirical sculptures and provocative installations.
Now 58 and living and working in New York City, he was born in 1960 in Padua, Italy.
He began his artistic career in his twenties, making wooden furniture in the Italian city of Forli in the 1980s.
One of his earliest pieces, a sign of things to come, was an ostrich with its head buried in the ground, made to look like Pablo Picasso and taped to a wall of a Milan art gallery.
He first achieved worldwide notoriety in 1999 when he revealed his work La Nona Ora (The Ninth Hour) a wax statue of Pope John Paul II being struck by a meteorite.
In 2011 he caused further controversy with ‘others’ a collection of 2,000 stuffed pigeons, presented at the 54th Venice Biennale art exhibition.
It was in this year that he had a solo exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, where all his pieces were suspended from the ceiling.
After roaring success, five years later in 2015, Cattelan decided to replace one of the toilets in the museum with a fully-functioning replica made of 18-karat gold.
More than 100,000 people queued to use it. Among his other notable works are ‘Him’, a wax model of a schoolboy version of Hitler kneeling on the floor in prayer and his many taxidermy pieces, including an entire horse and crocodile suspended upside down from the ceiling.
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