Vandals have targeted the Hands and Molecule sculpture at Ramsgate’s West Cliff.
Red paint was thrown over the art work during the weekend.
‘Hands and Molecule’ -a nod to the discovery, development and manufacture of innovative medicines in the county – was sculpted by David Barnes, commissioned by Sustrans, funded by Pfizer Limited and installed by Thanet District Council in 2000.
The bronze is sited as a landmark for the National Cycle Network, which links cycle-paths in Thanet to destinations all over the UK including London, Penzance, Holyhead, Inverness and Belfast.
It is not yet known why the sculpture was targeted.
It has been suggested that it may be because of the connection with Pfizer in Sandwich where the site Discovery Park now houses Instro Precision.
Instro has been the site of several protests -often using red paint – by people who say the company supplies Israel with weapons to kill Palestinian people in Gaza. However, the action group responsible for the Instro demonstration has confirmed they are not responsible for the paint on the sculpture.
A Thanet council team is undertaking the clean up. A council spokesperson said: “We can confirm that we have been notified about the vandalism to the hands and molecule structure, and the council is responsible for the clean up. Our Minor Works team are in attendance now, working on the sculpture.”