What’s a man to do when he finds himself with nearly half a ton of spare cattle feces and a few hours on his hands? If you’re Siberian cattle farmer Mikhail Bopposov, the answer is clear — craft, mold, and sculpt that dung into a cobra-shaped pooh statue to entertain the children in your village during the long Siberian winter. You read that right — while it would be a bizarre and troubling religious icon pretty much anywhere else on the planet, in Siberia, a 900-pound-snake hewn from frozen cow dung counts as a toy, verifying that Siberia is exactly the place that we all think it is.
Reminding us all that “Russian Dung Snake” is not the world’s worst cryptozoological mystery or a particularly deviant sex act, but a piece of art, Bopposov used 880 pounds of dung from his 17 cattle to craft the dung cobra, which is presented with its head raised, its hood flared, and its body wrapped in a tight coil that certainly resembles nothing but a snake. Nope, not at all reminiscent of anything else, that shape. The statue, Bopposov said, was made to ring in the Chinese New Year — the Year of the Snake begins on February 10 — and give the children of his village in the Siberian state of Yakutia something to “play around with and have some fun,” according to Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
If you’re thinking to yourself “Now wait a minute, that’s an awfully detailed and capable sculpture of a nearly 900-pound turd cobra. Maybe it isn’t the artist’s first time working with cow dung?” go ahead and give yourself a gold star. Bopposov and his son craft snow and ice sculptures as well, but temperature concerns can make ice difficult to work with. Since 2008, he’s worked in the more forgiving and fungible medium of cow dung, producing a tank in 2008 to commemorate his time in a military tank division, and rang in the Chinese New Year of 2011 with a dung statue of a dragon, presumably to commemorate his time in the military’s dragon squadron.
(via RIA Novosti, image courtesy of Narrya Bopposova)
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