The President o the Russian Academy of Arts, sculptor Zurab Tseritely, announced that he is going to create three monuments to the author of “La Comйdie humain” Honore de Balzac in Paris. The biggest of them is supposed to be 40 meters high. As the sculptor said, the monument would present the world-known French writer “sitting amid his books, characters, streets, and buildings of Paris, where he used to live and work.” Inside the monument, it was planned to house the subsidiary of the museum of the contemporary Russian art. Another monument, seven meters high, is supposed to be placed in front of the city administration of Paris. Finally, the smallest monument (the smallest according to Zurab Tseritely’s measurement) is planned to be placed in the town of La Rochelle.
However, the French government destroyed Tseritely’s plans yesterday. As RIA Novosti informed, Tseritely was conducting negotiations pertaining to the monuments with former mayor of Paris Jean Tiberi, whose office was then taken by Bertrand Delanoe in 2001. Tiberi was ok with the plans of the Russian sculptor, but the incumbent mayor of Paris does not approve Tseritely’s gigantic initiatives at all. The government of Paris believes that the 40-meter monument will not fit the architectural style of Paris. Furthermore, there is no place for such a monument in the city, the square of Paris is 9x12 kilometers.
We would like to say here that Zurab Tseritely is known as the creator of huge sculptures that he set up all over the world. His works can be seen in Tokyo, Paris, London, and New York. In Moscow, he was in charge of the work connected with the restoration of the temple of Christ the Savior. However, his most famous work is the monument “300 hundred years of the Russian fleet” (Peter the Great) – Muscovites say that this monument is an eyesore, and there is a very strong wish to get rid of it. It is not ruled out that the small square of the French capital was used as a reason to refuse the sculptor. As a matter of fact, the Paris government decided to exercise a bit of its artistic taste and to avoid the risk of such a “decoration.” However, the Eiffel tower had a lot of opponents in the city during the time when it was built. For example, famous French writer Guy de Maupassant hated the tower so much that he was hiding every evening in the only place, from which he could not see it, in the restaurant on the top of the tower itself. However, now the tower is the symbol of Paris and France.
Alexander Molchanov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov