A New Orleans park became home to the city’s latest monument — a mysterious statue of Pokemon character Pikachu placed on a defunct fountain.
Residents visiting Coliseum Square Park Sunday morning discovered an unidentified artist had installed the Pikachu statue, made from fiberglass but designed to look like aged bronze, atop a disused fountain that formerly was home to a couple of abandoned tires.
The statue, an apparent homage to blockbuster augmented reality game Pokemon Go, bears an image of Pokeball on its base along with the hashtag, “#pokemonument.”
Pokemon Go players said the statue was placed on the location of a Pokemon Gym in the smartphone game.
City officials have not yet said whether the statue will be allowed to remain in the park, but it appears to have met with at least temporary approval from the park’s neighborhood association.
“We have a new statue… though not sure for how long!” the Coliseum Square Association said in posting a photo of the monument on Facebook.
“It’s funny. It’s one of those New Orleans surprises we just come to expect after a while,” Karon Reese, vice president of the neighborhood association, told the Uptown Messenger. “Right now, it’s a defunct fountain. It’s actually on our list of fountains to get running again. So as long as it’s sitting here without any water flowing, it’s OK with me… What I think is kind of good about Pokemon is the way it brings people out into neighborhoods, and we’re always thrilled to have people in our neighborhood and in our parks.”