In what may leave many Chicagoans feeling personally defiled, Chicago police report that someone has vandalized Cloud Gate, known more affectionately as The Bean, at Millennium Park.
Authorities are investigating after police discovered damage to the steel sculpture on Monday.
Police discovered the defacement -- someone's name scratched onto the Bean -- on the north side of the sculpture during the daylight hours Monday, according to a Central District police captain.
The graffiti is about three feet off the ground and appears to read "Peter S" and "Ashley D."
Park spokeswoman Jill Hurwitz says the damage is minimal. The company that originally polished the sculpture will buff out the unwanted marks. Mayor Richard Daley said he hopes the culprits are identified so they can pay the repair costs.
There was no description of the person who defaced the piece, which is located near Michigan Avenue and Randolph Street, and the captain did not know whether any cameras might have captured what happened.
Cloud Gate is British artist Anish Kapoor's first public outdoor work installed in the United States, according to Millennium Park's Web Site. The 110-ton elliptical sculpture is forged of a seamless series of highly polished stainless steel plates, which reflect the city's famous skyline and the clouds above, the site said.
A 12-foot-high arch provides a "gate" to the concave chamber beneath the sculpture, inviting visitors to touch its mirror-like surface and see their image reflected back from a variety of perspectives.