Group holds protest against the erection of statue in Kyrenia mountain

A demonstration against the monumental statue to be constructed in the foothills of the Kyrenia mountain was held last week.

The ‘No to the Statue Platform’ gathered at the Hirondel roundabout in Kyrenia on Wednesday last week. The platform is composed of 40 different groups including the Chamber of Architects.

The Forestry Department contacted Kyrenia Municipality last week, expressing concern about the inappropriate size (40 metres high and 30 metres wide) and siting of the statue.

The project is the brainchild of and financed by Erbil Arkın and the Arkın Creative Arts and Design University (ARUCAD). The group said that the enormous dimensions of the statue were a symbol of power, ego and money. This was the vanity project of a wealthy individual wanting to immortalise himself instead of respecting society’s values, they said.

The platform stated that the sculpture to be called the ‘Noble Villager’ was full of drawbacks in terms of “ecological, economic, cultural and artistic” considerations, and it was requested that the sculpture project be abandoned.

In April this year, Kibris Postasi wrote that Erbil Arkın, who is financing the project, responded to critics of the statue by saying the following:

“The source of inspiration for the ‘Noble Villager’ Statue is the historical, cultural and ecological spirit of the Island of Cyprus, which has been enriched by the influence of different cultures over the years. When everyone looks back on their past, they see people who earn their living from the soil. ‘Noble Villager’ will be implemented in order to honor our ancestors who have labor and rights on these lands. The statue was given the name ‘Noble Villager’ to represent the Cypriot Villager. It was set out to create a visual effect that symbolizes our common cultural heritage on the island. While many of the monumental statues in the world are usually dedicated to community leaders or an ideology, ‘Noble Peasant’ is unique in the world as it is the largest statue dedicated to society based on a member of the public“.

Yeniduzen, Kibris Postasi, LGC News

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