Controversial British artist Tracey Emin has hit the headlines once again, this time after announcing that she’s married. Nothing scandalous about that, you might think, until you discover that her new husband is actually a rock.

That’s right – a rock. The 52 year old London-born artist, formerly of the Young British Artists and known as an ‘enfant terrible’ of the art world, explained how this situation came about, she said it started when she came across a small box containing a wedding ring purely by chance.

Tracey EminTracey Emin has reportedly gotten married to a rock

“I put it on my finger and suddenly realised it’s superstitious to put a wedding ring on your finger unless you are getting married, otherwise you have to throw the ring away,” she said at a news conference in Hong Kong ahead of her new exhibition ‘I Cried Because I Love You’, which features a series of drawings about the union.

Holding a wedding ceremony by herself last summer while at her home in France, she exchanged vows underneath an olive tree while wearing her father’s white funeral shroud.

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“I thought the stone is so majestic and beautiful, I really do love the stone. And then I thought about the way I love, how I pour love into things and people, passionately, but not expecting it to be returned either. I just accept that’s the way it is, it’s just me who gives. The stone becomes a metaphor for my feeling.”

So what are the practicalities of being married to an inanimate object?

“It just means that at the moment I am not alone,” she told The Art newspaper in another interview, when asked about her new work. “Somewhere on a hill facing the sea, there is a very beautiful ancient stone, and it’s not going anywhere. It will be there, waiting for me.”

In a separate interview, however, she claims that the rock has actually moved in with her. “The whole thing with the stone is - it's a big f***ing stone, right. It's in my garden, it's very nice and very impressive and I like it a lot,” she told Post magazine.

Emin has never been married before, and was previously in a lengthy relationship with her fellow Young British Artist Mat Collishaw.

More: Tracey Emin’s Brit Award statue revealed [archive]