Proposal for a Monument

What kinds of monuments are possible? Where and when? New York has its Statue of Liberty and Rio de Janeiro its Statue of Christ the Redeemer. In Estonia the artist Tauno Kangro has offered a 14-meter statue of the national hero Kalevipoeg as a gift to the City of Tallinn. Is it good? Is it bad? Is it the wrong location, an occupation of public space by private capital, a marvellous gift or a huge stupid mistake?

Kangro’s monument hasn’t been built yet, but it has stirred up a fierce debate. We have listened to the arguments and have a proposal for how to positively transform Kangro’s monument into a ”Monument for the Masses”:

1. Build the statue of Kalevipoeg – and it’s counterpart

Build the statue of Kalevipoeg as proposed by Kangro in the bay of Tallinn. At the same time take into consideration a possible demolition of the statue by the use of explosives.

Build and display at Freedom Square a specially designed trigger, which has the potential to bring the statue down.

2. Put him to the trial – yes or no?

After a trial period arrange a referendum to decide whether to keep or ruin the statue of Kalevipoeg.

Arrange a lottery. The winners of the lottery are the ones to pull the trigger at Freedom Square, if the referendum so decides. The lottery partly finances the project and a possible destruction of the statue is therefore more related to capitalist logic than to the waste of public resources.

3. The monument as a collective experience

The new monument for the City of Tallinn hereafter consists of Kalevipoeg, standing or as a ruin, the trigger at Freedom Square and the collective experience of the whole event. Tallinn has created a Monument for the Masses.

This website was closed for participation 2007. It now functions as a documentation of the 2-year project "Monument for the Masses", and is also represented at Rhizome.org ArtBase New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York.
All texts written by Trial and Error (Janna Holmstedt + Po Hagström), 2006. For references & credits, click here >>