In the municipal center of Newport Beach, California, sits a local oddity that is equal parts controversial, cuddly, adorable, and absurd.

The sculpture, dubbed “Bunnyhenge,” consists of 14 large white bunnies arranged in a circle, with two even larger 8-foot-tall bunnies found nearby. While these oversized stone bunnies sit stoically staring at each other with their colorful beady eyes, the town around them has become divided over their existence.

When it was first installed in 2013, the sculpture was initially very popular, especially with children (creepy as some others may find a circle of giant bunnies to be). But the public artwork also cost the city $221,000, or nearly $14,000 per bunny, which outraged many residents. One candidate for city council—who was later elected—even declared that “we need to blow up the bunnies!” 

Despite the threats, the bunnies have made it nearly five years, and can still be found strangely and stoically gathered in the park by City Hall.

“read to your bunny often and your bunny will read to you.”

-rosemary wells, american author and illustrator of childrens’ books,

including the ‘max and ruby series’



credits: leira, atlas obscura


68 responses »

  1. It seems like it would be a bigger waste of money to blow up the bunnies. I don’t know that I’d be all that happy about them if I were a local, but since I’m not, I want to plan a road trip! Of course that could just be because I’m stuck at home right now. A trip to California to see a vaguely creepy circle of stone bunnies sounds kind of amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Public art is always such a contentious issue — it is vital to every community, yet, somehow, the price nearly always becomes the point of issue – yet, we seldom get upset with the cost of a public building and often don’t have as much to say about it either! I think the bunnies are lovely. And the title is very creative! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Equally cute & creepy, but I love it! I’m curious about the two 8ft tall bunnies, I bet they’re more on the creepy side. I’m a sucker for novelty things like this so I’d quite like this in my town!
    Caz xx

    Liked by 1 person

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