Information letter from Jens Galschiøt to the Hong Kong list. June 22nd, 2023
Pillar of Shame moved from Berlin to exhibition in Denmark
The 8 meter high Pillar of Shame was erected in the middle of Berlin a month ago. In connection with the lineup in May, there were speeches from representatives from several China's minorities, like Tibetans and the Muslims, and from the Hong Kong Democracy movement and Taiwan's ambassador in Germany.
The artist Jens Galschiøt himself is in Berlin to take care of the removal of the sculpture and drive it to Denmark
A common theme of the speeches was China's attempt to massively influence its surroundings and suppression of the Chinese population and violations of human rights in China.
In connection with the exhibition in Berlin, China tried through a press release issued by the Chinese embassy to deny that there are violations of human rights in China at all, and criticized that Germany gave space to exhibit the Pillar of Shame in Berlin.
The exhibition in Berlin was arranged by the press group Axel Springer’s Freedom Foundation. The sculpture was, symbolically, set up precisely on the spot where the Berlin Wall once divided Berlin.
In connection with the exhibition in Berlin, the large sculpture was painted orange by the many people attending, including the Taiwanese Ambassador. The painting was a symbolic way of recreating the Pillar of Shame and “take the sculpture back” to Europe. It was perhaps this action of painting it that provoked the Chinese authorities. The original sculpture is still in Hong Kong where is has, after 25 years, been seized by the judiciary in order to be used as evidence against the Hong Kong democracy movement.
The Pillar of Shame in Berlin will be erected in the town of Thisted in northern Denmark, which will open a huge exhibition with the artist Jens Galschiøt's sculptures, that will last all summer.
For further information contact Jens Galschiøt +45 4044 7058
Exhibition in Berlin by Axel Springer – Antje Shipmann ph +49 1511 5089 683
Exhibition in Thisted, Denmark: Ingrid Drengsgård: ph +45 2360 7867