Saturday, 9 January 2016

la mort et les statues

Correspondent Messy Nessy Chic documents, in a very well researched and composed article, the sad and little regarded fate of the avante garde statuary that peopled the avenues of Paris during the Third Republic.
With preservation of the many artful bronzes being the exception and not the rule, most were dismantled and melted down for scrap, lest the style or personages represented offend—or outright threaten—the occupying regime. The caretaker Vichy government of France was accused of giving into too many demands as it was, and of course the concessions that wartime France one did not solely hinge on removing controversial public art and did manage to avoid graver insult. The fact that this demolition was recorded and can be revisited presently, the figures still serve to represent all victims of war as all monuments and memorials do. Though of a vastly different character, these scenes parallel the time we visited the Citadel of Spandau to find a heap of displaced statues.