Modern art can be dangerous

It was a sensation in the 70s when the Tate was forced to close a new exhibit, just four days after it was opened, when it was almost wrecked by an overly exuberant public.

Nearly 40 years on, Robert Morris's Bodyspacemotionthings has lost none of its potential for danger after clocking up a string of casualties during a special reappearance at Tate Modern this summer. The artwork, in which participants are invited to negotiate see-saws, a tightrope and other obstacles, left 23 people needing first aid in just over week.

According to records released under the Freedom of Information Act, the injured included a two-year-old girl who was taken to hospital after banging her head, and two boys aged 11 and seven who were taken to hospital with a crushed finger and grazed forehead in separate incidents involving the installation.

Other injuries included a cut leg, a rope burn to the hand, bruised ribs, and a bruised shoulder.

The injuries occurred despite a stringent application of 21st century health and safety procedures by the Tate.

Tate Modern perfects the art of living dangerously (The Guardian, 12 July 2009)