You know you made it in life if a statue is made after your likeness, right? Maybe so, but it is certainly not the case that you cannot make it in life without a statue, or that all the people who are made of a statue have made it in life.
Some of the most famous statues are from people we don’t even know anymore. Other great people we still know today have never been allowed to write a statue to their name.
But if the person who depicts the statue, or the object, is not famous himself, then the maker is, in the case of these most famous statues in the world.
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1. The Statue of Unity
Statue of Liberty Dedicated to one of India’s founding fathers, and the country’s First Deputy and honorable Prime Minister, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Statue of Unity, stands tall atop Sadhu Bet island on the Narmada facing the Sardar Sarovar Dam downstream in Kevadiya colony, southeast of Vadodara.
Ther Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled what is billed to be the world’s tallest and biggest statue at 182 meters. The project was handed over to Larsen & Tubro at a whopping 2,989 crore, who commenced construction on 31 October 2014.
This idea was to inaugurate for the Sardar Patel statue on his 143rd birth anniversary, on 31 October 2018. The project was wrapped up in a period of 42 months.
However, the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel statue was first announced at a press conference by Our Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi announced on 7 October 2010 to celebrate his 10th year running as a Gujarat’s chief minister.
Reason for building the Statue of Unity
“Loh Purush” Sardar Patel’s commitment towards the princely states for the consolidated the Indian republic of formation, and his tireless relief efforts for the refugees leaving in Delhi and Punjab and integrating the British colonial provinces that were allocated to India earned him the title “Unifier of India’. It was in his memory, and as a mark of his national contribution to filled with diversities, the idea of the Statue of Unity took birth.
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2. The Statue of Liberty
We go directly from the former communist empire to the capitalist west, the United States. On Liberty Island, in New York, you can find the colossal Statue of Liberty.
The image is a symbol for everyone from immigrants to returning Americans and visitors. At 46 meters in height, this image is a fraction smaller than our number 6, but it counts 93 meters if we count the base, and if this was a list with the highest images, then this image came before the Russian Motherland image.
The Francois Frederic Bartholdi designed the statue, and it was provided with a steel construction by none other than Gustave Eiffel. Bartholdi’s mother, that’s how the story goes, was the model.
The image was originally called ‘Freedom illuminates the world’, but for the Americans, the slogan ‘freedom’ was more than enough. A funny fact is that the statue was originally intended as a lighthouse at the Northern entrance of the Suez Canal, but Egypt could not afford France for it.
So the French decided to give it to America as a gift, and in 1886 it was put in its current place. Another fact, Dame Vrijheid’s crown consists of seven points, and this symbolizes seven continents and seven seas. The ancient marble crest of Dionysos is also famous along because of its own history.
3. Christ the Redeemer
Back to South America. The Alto da Boa Vista district of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil is a huge statue of Jesus Christ. Although the statue is ‘only’ 38 meters high, it nevertheless towers above everything and everyone, because it stands on a 710-meter high mountain called Corcovado. It weighs 1145 tons and the wingspan of Jesus’ arms is 28 meters (almost as wide as high!).
Already in 1850 the Catholic priest Pedro Maria Boss wanted to place the statue, but the queen did not want to help finance it. When Brazil became a republic in 1889, the idea was rejected. However, in 1921 the idea was given new life, and ten years later the statue was ready. President Getulio Vargas dedicated it to an official ceremony. In 2007, this image was also called one of the seven new wonders of the world.
4. The Sphinx of Giza
We turn our back to the British Museum of London and travel to Egypt. This Sphinx is located next to the death temple of Chefren. The Sphinx is 57 meters long, 6 meters wide and 20 meters high, and consists of three layers of limestone.
Her head represents the head of a pharaoh because it wears a nemes (a royal headdress). In ancient times the Sphinx was portrayed very colorfully: the head and the whole body part were red, while the nemes were colored with yellow and blue. As such, the Sphinx guarded the pyramids.
No, it’s not a new word for yawning. The Moai are the stone statues that look out over the Pacific Ocean on Easter Island. They are carved from volcanic stone and if you don’t have the time to see them on the Easter Island itself, you can see one at the British Museum in London, and one at the Louvre, in Paris.
Most of the images are carved from compact volcanic ash that comes from the crater of Rano Raraku. Many statues can be found close to this crater, including unfinished ones, and the quarry from which they come appears to have been abandoned in a hurry.
Other images are still on a sled made to move them, or on tree trunks for transport. This sudden cessation of work happened around 1700 when the Moai culture was replaced by the Tangata Manu (birdman) culture. The island was probably overcrowded, and the farmland was exhausted.
In addition, there was no wood left on the island to make boats needed for fishing, since all the wood was cut to move the images! Famines led to wars and ultimately cannibalism, and so the new culture eventually took over.
However, we are not all sure, because when the island was ‘discovered’ by Western whalers, the original traditions and culture were very effectively destroyed.
6. The Thinker
Auguste Rodin made his most famous work of art in 1881, a bronze statue that was part of a gate for the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris. The theme of the gate was ‘Gate of Hell’ after the work of Dante. The image must, therefore, represent Dante himself, who contemplates about his works.
In 1922 the work was taken from its surroundings and transferred to a pedestal in the garden of Hotel Biron, in the Rodin Museum. There is another specimen, however, that you can see at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen, and a third at the tomb of Rodin, in Meudon.
You understand several casts of the same Thinker have been made. This can easily be done with bronze castings since once the mold is made, casting is a ‘simple’ matter of melting bronze and allowing it to solidify. Thus, there are several equally authentic Thinkers to be found throughout Europe! So Dante thinks of everything!
All of these images are large, either because they depict celebrities, or because they are made by celebrities, or because they are simply imposing, gigantic, moving, or otherwise impressive structures.
All the above images have one thing in common: when you stand at the foot of it, almost everyone is impressed. Although they may not look much like photographs, the actual structures make a huge impression on their visitors. Always worth to visit!
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