Thousands of Little Clay Men marched alongside Manchester’s commuters as part of the Future Everything festival today.
The Cambridge-based ceramic artist Laurence Epps’ critique on Britain’s protestant work ethic has seen trails of the 8,000 figurines placed in and around Urbis, Stevenson Square, Hilton Street and elsewhere.
Future Everything festival, now in its seventeenth year, is encouraging people to tweet about the fired-clay businessmen’s adventures by tweeting with the hashtag #littleclaymen or uploading to www.sykey.org.
The artist also wants this piece to be fully interactive.
“I thought the people of Manchester might enjoy it and want to get involved and have some of the people to take home and play with,” said Mr Epps. “It's a wonderful city. It's got amazing cultural heritage.”
Sharing an insight into what he hopes to achieve with the work, he added: “My work questions our relationship with office work: how we hate it and love it at the same time, and the way we need to work.
“The scale of the art mirrors the way that sometimes, as workers, we feel dispensable.
“But if the figures help people to take a moment to think about their job, then I will feel like I've done my job.”
The models have previously been released into London and Stoke, as part of the 2011 British Ceramics Biennial during the latter part of last year.
The project will be accompanied by an exhibition of Mr Epps’ ‘cutting edge’ sculptures entitled Human Resources, as part of FutureEverybody, which opens tomorrow at the Museum of Science and Industry and runs until Sunday June 10.
Have you seen any Little Clay Men in Manchester today? Tweet your pictures to us @MM_Newsonline.