Man who snapped $300,000 Wellington waterfront sculpture says there 'wasn't a sign' telling people not to do it

The man who was filmed breaking an expensive sculpture on Wellington's waterfront yesterday has opened up about his actions, saying he was "bored" and "there wasn't a sign that says don't climb".

Hunter MacDonald, in an interview filmed by a PR person, says he climbed the Len Lye sculpture because he was "bored". Source: 1 NEWS

Hunter Macdonald went viral on social media after climbing the Len Lye Water Whirler sculpture in the capital yesterday.

"I started to perform some of my newfound gymnastics skills and one thing led to another.

"I seemed to attract a bit of an audience - Hunter Macdonald loves a good audience, he's a bit of a showman - and I started to test the limits of the metal sculpture."

However, Mr Macdonald's acrobatics have landed him in trouble after the $300,000 sculpture snapped.

"It came down hard on my head, like a 20-foot baseball bat.

"I rose to the surface [of the water] sort of dazed and confused, managed to do this limp-wrist doggy paddle to the rocks and managed to clamber myself up.

"I didn't realise the weight of my mistake until it started to explode on social media."

Wellington Mayor Justin Lester told 1 NEWS the scaling of the water whirler was an act of silliness that was "next level".

It has recently been repaired after being damaged in the Kaikōura earthquake.

"Water had got into the mechanics of the water whirler, we were just about ready to open it up again so to see it snapped off in a pretty public display of stupidity really was unfortunate." 

Mr Macdonald said he was heading to the supermarket on his day off when he became distracted by the Water Whirler, leading to the incident.

"I was bored. It was a nice day.

"There wasn't a sign that said don't climb it."

Mr Macdonald accepts there will be repercussions from the incident as the police have all his details.

"I think I'll be expecting a court date and some sort of repayment but I can pretty confidently rule out money because I don't have two nickels to rub together.

"But I'm willing to do community service."

Police told 1 NEWS this afternoon they will take a statement from Mr MacDonald today but there wouldn't be any news on potential charges laid against him until later in the week.