Don't call the police, it's only art: Bizarre mannequin 'hoodies' invade the streets of RomeUS artist Mark Jenkins has created the street installations to 'get people to look up from their mobile phones'He has placed hooded mannequins poking out of bins, playing tug of war, and apparently fired at a darts board
19:39 GMT, 9 December 2012
An army of sinister hoodies appear to have invaded Rome.
But closer inspection reveals that the strange figures are in fact mannequins styled in bizarre positions.
Confused passers by in the city have spotted the models placed in a giant dart board like human darts, left in a dumpster with only their legs showing and even playing tug of war on a rooftop as they appear to be breaking in.
Heave ho: Passers by have been stunned to see the hooded figures in various different places around the city. Here they appear to be playing tug of war on a rooftop
Wasted: The artist has become known for his macabre sense of fun in his work, such as this 'legs in a dumpster piece'
Chilling: A hooded mannequin runs the risk of getting a ticket as he catches up on some sleep between two parking signs
The offbeat art installation was the brainchild of US street artist Mark Jenkins, 42 from Washington DC.
Jenkins, who worked as a saxophonist and web designer before switching to street art, said his aim is to get people to look up from their mobile phones for a split second and engage with the world around them.
He said: 'Most of the work focuses on hyper realistic situations that interact with the environment.'
'But there is usually a surrealistic aspect that sends my work into the land of the absurd.'
Stunned: A male mannequin appears to be captivated by the beauty of an expensively dressed shop model
Oh, you shouldn't have!: An eerie hand juts out of a wall offering a bunch of flowers to passers by, while mannequins appear to have been fired at a giant darts board
Fishing on a star: A fisherman dangles his rod over the side of a building as another hangs out on the street. Jenkins said he wants people to look up from their mobile phones for a split second and 'engage with the world around them'
'For example we see a mannequin headed man on the knees worshipping an expensively dressed woman mannequin.
'And people so covered in litter that they are like bugs, which I call litterbugs.
'All of this is ultimately about the absurd – by challenging the idea of normal behaviour I get people to think differently about the city.
Hanging out: A man walks between arches as one of Jenkins' sculptures hangs out above
The cheeky artist positions slices of toast to poke out of a drain close to a pavement. Art fans say Jenkins has become the first celebrity 3d street artist
Are you in there: A mannequin lies covered in newspaper in a backstreet. Jenkins has said his work causes 'fear which then turns to laughter'
Litter bugs: The mannequins appear to have become a magnet for rubbish as they stand next to a bin on a street in Rome
'The reaction of passers-by is usually fear or confusion that turns to laughter.'
Jenkins' first street project was a series of clear tape casts made from his body that he installed on the streets in Rio de Janeiro, in 2003.
In 2005 he began working with Sandra Fernandez on the Storker Project, a series where tape 'babies' are 'dropped' in different cities
He told the Washington Post: 'People are generally curious. Kids, adults, and a police officer have approached with the question “What is that”
Then that’s usually followed by “How many rolls of tape did it take”
'What I’m doing is similar to the way writers and filmmakers create a fictitious reality. My work isn’t in a theater or a book, though- it comes at you out of nowhere one day when you’re walking down the street.'