Saturday, June 03, 2006

The Goddess of Democracy - May 30, 1989

On May 30, 1989, Chinese protestors occupying Tiananmen Square during a peaceful protest and hunger strike in Beijing, China erected a 30-foot statue they called The Goddess of Democracy. She was carved over four days from papier-mache and styrofoam over a metal armature by students from the Central Academy of Fine Arts.

The beautiful statue was, according to a sculptor named Tsao Tsing-yuan, not based solely on our own lovely Lady, but has the sculpture movement of Socialist-Realism as a huge influence. Looking at the Goddess I also noticed a resemblance to the old representations of Columbia (which was doubtless unintentional).

The Goddess was erected facing the portrait of Cairman Mao. (I thnk she'd have won the stare-off if it wasn't for the tanks.) She stood for five days before tanks destroyed her on June 4th, when they began overrunning the Square to disperse the protestors.

There are now at least five replicas of The Goddess of Democracy erected all over the world in honor of the people killed in Tianenman Square, including one in San Francisco and in Victoria Park, Hong Kong.

The Goddess of Democracy - Wikipedia
The Goddess of Democrary - China Support Network
The source of my pic of her
The Goddess of Democracy blog entry featuring Columbia

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