A cheeky sculpture of Environment Minister Nick Smith made out of horse excrement has been paraded outside Environment Canterbury offices.

The work by controversial artist Sam Mahon depicts Smith with his pants down squatting over a glass - to protest against the Government's treatment of the water quality issue.

The statue was placed outside ECan's Christchurch offices this morning despite ECan getting an injunction to stop it.

Mahon says that the council's approach is heavy-handed, arguing that it is simple art.


Mahon was served with an injunction preventing him from delivering the artwork to ECan last week, but instead placed the piece on the public footpath with a support group in tow this morning.

It was later removed by Mahon on a trailer and he now plans to move the sculpture to Nelson next week.

In a statement, Mahon said he found "the poisoning of our children with cyanobacteria" to be offensive.

"As far as displaying Nick's genitals to the world, perhaps the [Ecan] CEO Bill Bayfield has never entered a gallery or visited the Vatican City and cast his gaze on the multitudinous penises in bronze and marble that swarm around the square, much to the delight of children, the Pope and one or two extraordinary cardinals," he said.

Meanwhile, Smith said he's not bothered by the statue.

"It is a bit crass, and there are far smarter ways of people expressing themselves without being offensive," he said.

"Politics gives one a thick skin so I am not bothered by it.

"I am far more interested in doing the hard policy yards that will actually improve management of freshwater on which we are making good progress."

In 2009, Mahon's sculpture of Smith made out of cow dung fetched $3000 on Trade Me.

Smith referred to Mahon's last piece as being "crap art".