A statue of the Blessed Virgin with the Christ Child created by sculptor Grigory Pototsky will be erected September 11 on the peak of Kazbek Mountain, in the North Caucasus.
The two-meter-high bronze figure should, according to the author’s idea, become a symbol of peace and unity for mankind.
It is not only the date that is symbolic (the sad day of the terrorist acts in New York and Washington), it is the location as well: the Caucasus, the arena of constant armed conflicts.
According to Grigory Pototsky, he already knew five years ago, while working at the sculpture, that it should be erected in a place where there have been the biggest world disasters. So, initially, he wanted to erect it in the Balkans.
“Though, I understood that Europe will never be the arena of another great war, while the most dangerous places in the world are Caucasus and the Middle East,” – the sculptor explains.
The sculpture will be carried to a height of 5,033 m by helicopter. At the peak, it will be received by the great climbers Benedict Kashakashvili, Lev Sarkisov, and others, who have conquered the highest peaks of the world. It will be they who will erect the nearly 300-kg bronze figure on its natural pedestal.
The sculpture height is only 2 meters, so it will not be visible from below. However, Grigory Pototsky says that this is not so important: “The idea should be in humanity’s consciousness that, somewhere, at a great height, there is she, the Mother of God, who looks over us. The people below, who carry arms, might just hesitate for a moment, or, perhaps, they will not kill each other at all.”
“This cultural project is not a religious one, because our sculpture cannot be regarded as a canonical icon. This is first of all a symbol based on Christianity,” the author stated at the presentation of the project. “Humanity started from the crucifixion of Christ, when people understood that life can be given for love. The way of love is the only way to achieve understanding between nations. I believe and hope that peace will finally be reached in Caucasus, which have suffered so much from war. However, for this, concrete deeds and bright thoughts are necessary. The propaganda of violence and cruelty has left almost no empty space in our minds for beauty and goodness. We have almost forgotten the word conscience.”
According to a Georgian legend, if between two fighting men a woman stands up and throws her kerchief, armistice should be established. According to Grigory Pototsky, this woman will Mother of God.
Grogory Pototsky has created many sculptures, among which is a statue of Andrew the First, which was erected in honor of the 300-year anniversary of Russian Fleet. Though, his most famous statue is his sculpture of the great Russian poet Alexander Pushkin. The bronze sculpture “Requiem for Pushkin” is now in Washington. While, in 1994, Grigory Pototsky unveiled a Pushkin monument in the city of Hammer, near to Duesseldorf.
Two years ago, Grogory Pototsky erected a monument to St Nikolai in the Turkish city of Demre. As a result, the city took on a new aura: the city started to attract tourists, and people became more friendly. Recently, the artist, together with St Petersburg Mayor Vladimir Yakovlev, presented an Alexander Pushkin bust to the Canadian city of Quebec, which will be erected on the city’s St Petersburg Square. Both cities are now sister cities. The great creative mission of art should bring its fruits to the Caucasus as well.
Yelena Kiseleva PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/culture/2002/08/13/45612.html