A gigantic pile of carrots seemingly dumped on a British college campus has piqued the attention of social media users worldwide.
Photos of the scene have gone viral, and it seems like everyone’s eager to figure out why so many carrots — like, a truly breathtaking amount of carrots — were left on the campus of Goldsmiths University, a London-based school that focuses on creative learning and the arts.
Some suggested that the school might be trying to attract a new type of student.
There was some speculation that it might be the remnants of a gigantic band of snowmen.
Are we sure it wasn’t a lot of snowmen before we jump to any conclusions
— Michael (@Comacat_) September 30, 2020
Medical students,short of cadavers, have raided a snowmens’ graveyard…
— ProfDanny (@DanielGDresner) September 30, 2020
Preparations for the world’s largest snowman building competition? (Largest here = number of individual snowmen, rather than one big snowman with multiple noses)
— Rob Horgan (@Robbiehorgs) September 30, 2020
Others suggested that it might have just been an ordering error, or a creative way to keep any dining halls on campus well-stocked.
It’s to keep the students fed until Christmas. More than five a day there!
— Jake James #FBPE #NotMyPM #RejoinEU (@MFIJake) September 30, 2020
Someone lean too heavily on the keyboard when they ordered their online shopping?
— Phil Mackie (@philmackie) September 30, 2020
As solid as these theories might be, unfortunately, none of them were correct. A spokesperson for the school confirmed to TODAY Food that the nearly 32 tons of carrots were part of an installation called “Grounding,” produced by artist and student Rafael Perez Evans as part of the school’s Master of Fine Arts degree show, which runs from Oct. 2 to 6.
A video shared on Twitter shows the thousands upon thousands of carrots being poured out of a large truck as students look on.
On his website, the show is described as a “site-specific intervention exploring some of the tensions in visibility between the rural and the city” that brings “into contact two disparate forms: a large contemporary glass university building and fresh carrots.” The act of “dumping” the carrots is meant to mirror a form of protest that Perez said was “regularly used” by European farmers to “react against a central government which devalues their labour, agency and produce.”
“The produce in the piece are unwanted carrots, carrots that the food industry in the UK deems not worthy of shelves,” reads the site.
Related: Other editions of the piece reportedly sold for even higher prices.
Some people on Twitter criticized what they saw as food waste, but the university said that arrangements had been made to make sure the huge amount of vegetables went to a good home once the exhibit ended.
“Rafael has arranged for the carrots to be removed at the end of the exhibition run and donated to animals,” said a spokesperson for the school.
Well … glad we got to the root of that.