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Seattle's black monolith, which called to mind a similar structure from Stanley Kubrick's seminal film, 2001: A Space Odyssey, has been removed just as mysteriously as it first appeared.

Only a hole remains where the 9 foot-tall steel construction used to sit, on a hill in Seattle's Magnuson Park.

The Seattle Times reports that a broken-stemmed rose and hardened pieces of wax, indicating a candlelit departure, were left on the cement structure inside the hole that kept the structure steady during its brief stay.

There is evidence the monolith was dragged down the grassy hill to a nearby parking lot, which would point to the work of terrestrial pranksters rather than extraterrestrial intelligence.

The structure, an apparent homage to the dark, shrieking monolith featured in 2001 is believed to have been erected on New Year's Eve and mystery still surrounds who was behind the prank. Whether the monolith was the work of artists or a publicity stunt by locally-based Monolith Software is still anybody's guess

An industrial artists' group called Fabricators of the Attachments, whose previous work includes attaching a 700-pound steel ball and shackles to the leg of a sculpture in Seattle Art Museum, denied any involvement. A spokesperson for the group admitted to jealousy that it had not come up with the monolith idea itself.

Whilst the motives of whoever erected the monolith remain unclear, The Register has been sent a statement purporting to come from the people who pinched the monolith.

The 'Monolith Thieves' said: "While you were resting smug in your homes after erecting your 'renegade art', we were busy plotting its untimely demise.

"Seattle doesn't deserve to have its 'intelligence increased' by a mysterious sculpture. Better it were cut into pieces, melted down, and resold to passing tourists as miniature Space Needles. You should know by now that Seattle isn't driven by it's artists community, it's driven by dot com millionaires and idiot politicians."

They added: "Rest assured that we are taking great pleasure in destroying this ineffective piece of scrap metal... Don't plan on a sequel in 2010." ®

Update:

The monolith was placed on an island in the middle of Seattle’s Green Lake, which is a bird sanctuary, for around a day before making its way back to Magnuson Park. A picture on the monolith on the Duck Island bird sanctuary can be seen here.
The maker on the 500lb monolith has being named by local news station KOMO 4 News as Louie Raffloer, a local artist and (obviously) prankster.

Related stories:
Mysterious monolith appears in Seattle park
Seattle Times' story featuring picture of the monolith

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