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In Step With The Times
June 19, 2011 7:02 PM   Subscribe

"...authorities would try to find the culprits and would seek to clean up the monument, but it was unlikely to happen right away."
posted by griphus (27 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm not a big fan of vandalism but damn that's funny.
posted by Mister_A at 7:08 PM on June 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


They'll have to clean it eventually-- but what's the rush? Put it last on the priorities list. Great tourist attraction while it's standing, and honestly probably more welcome than a Soviet army monument in Bulgaria, which fought with the Axis in World War II.
posted by Electrius at 7:09 PM on June 19, 2011


Yeah, it's clever, and well executed, but when I recall how the Red Army stopped Hitler's armies, and then rolled them back, and the price the Russians paid for for it all, the humor curdles.
posted by mojohand at 7:17 PM on June 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


I wrote my undergrad thesis on communist monuments in post communist capitols. I focused specifically on Prague, Berlin and Budapest. The reaction to these monuments in each location was so different and interesting. Depending on budgets and political attitudes of the states, the monuments were destroyed, reapporiated, moved and yes, sometimes vandalized.

Anyway, seeing this story surface really makes me want to go to Grad School and expand that paper.
posted by piratebowling at 7:34 PM on June 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


Yeah, it's clever, and well executed, but when I recall how the Red Army stopped Hitler's armies, and then rolled them back, and the price the Russians paid for for it all, the humor curdles.

And then when I recall how they took over and subjugated numerous East European nations, the humor returns.
posted by jgaiser at 7:35 PM on June 19, 2011 [10 favorites]


...when I recall how the Red Army stopped Hitler's armies, and then rolled them back, and the price the Russians paid for for it all, the humor curdles.

And then when I recall how they took over and subjugated numerous East European nations, the humor returns.

I laughed so hard I got dizzy.
posted by Floydd at 7:37 PM on June 19, 2011


I have mixed feelings about this. A lot of the people who fought the Nazis on the Eastern Front were fucking superheroes. But Bulgaria got the shit end of the stick with both the German and Soviet occupations, and there was general resistance by Bulgarians to the deportation of Jews. So...huzzah?
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 7:48 PM on June 19, 2011


Too soon? Apparently.
posted by swift at 7:50 PM on June 19, 2011


It's wonderful, and even more wonderful that it's behind a skateboarders' half-pipe.

I have a few friends from Eastern Europe, and this is entirely in line with their sense of humor.
posted by emjaybee at 7:58 PM on June 19, 2011


I went to Bulgaria a couple of years ago, and spent about half an hour just watching kids skateboard on that halfpipe, sitting right in front of that monument. The monument as a whole is pretty much left to disrepair--it's right in a downtown park, but that part didn't get much traffic; it sort of felt abandoned (though at the time, in the spring of 2009, the plaza was under a lot of construction up by the main boulevard; this is by the Eagles' Bridge, I think).

In any event, Bulgaria has a lot of really interesting street art. Personally, I think this is kind of marvelous--if just for a short while. We'll see how long the half pipe gets to stay at this point...
posted by Admiral Haddock at 8:12 PM on June 19, 2011


the vandalism verona wrong (because vandalising art is wrong regardless of the political issues)...

but at the same time, it's awesome. Wonderful, creative, colourful, cheeky -- but not cruel.
posted by jb at 8:54 PM on June 19, 2011


I also wanted to say, there are political commenters who believe that monumental art, of the kind being vandalized, is in itself disrespectful to the dead, in that it is tacky and overblown and a blatant attempt at promoting state interests through exploitation of a tragedy.
posted by emjaybee at 9:07 PM on June 19, 2011 [4 favorites]


emjaybee: "monumental art, of the kind being vandalized, is in itself disrespectful to the dead, in that it is tacky and overblown and a blatant attempt at promoting state interests through exploitation of a tragedy"

So would you approve of painting comic book panels over the Vietnam Memorial?
posted by idiopath at 9:22 PM on June 19, 2011


If you're letting your opinion of the Red Army dictate your reaction to this graffiti/art, you're probably doing it wrong.
posted by auto-correct at 9:34 PM on June 19, 2011 [2 favorites]


...when I recall how the Red Army stopped Hitler's armies, and then rolled them back, and the price the Russians paid for for it all, the humor curdles.

And then when I recall how they took over and subjugated numerous East European nations, the humor returns.

I laughed so hard I got dizzy.


Subjugated being the key word
posted by Meatafoecure at 9:35 PM on June 19, 2011


If you haven't looked at the pictures, please note that they're not all super heroes - there's also Santa Claus, The Joker, and Ronald McDonald. Commercial icons of sorts.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:38 PM on June 19, 2011


Which makes the statement about heroic war statues even more amusing.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:39 PM on June 19, 2011


It is interesting to me that they were all repainted as American cultural icons. Say one thing for us, we've got great branding.
posted by Ad hominem at 9:59 PM on June 19, 2011


The article describes this as "a touch of colour"? That's like saying a robbery victim was "slightly burgled".
posted by armage at 11:40 PM on June 19, 2011


So would you approve of painting comic book panels over the Vietnam Memorial?

No, but I would approve of putting a Batman mask on Abe's head at the Lincoln Memorial.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:30 AM on June 20, 2011


So would you approve of painting comic book panels over the Vietnam Memorial?

If I was Vietnamese I might.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 12:32 AM on June 20, 2011 [6 favorites]


Now that's what I call Public Art!
posted by a humble nudibranch at 12:46 AM on June 20, 2011


After some further reading it was a poor analogy that I made. Bulgaria was Axis, and the statue (a single Soviet soldier surrounded by Bulgarians) celebrates Bulgaria's switch from Axis to Communist allegiance after WWII. Maybe comic book characters are too timid a statement. I think they should have gone with Ronald McDonald, Mickey Mouse, Super Mario, Colonel Sanders, and Donald Trump.
posted by idiopath at 1:14 AM on June 20, 2011


In Bishkek, the eternal flame has had all of its bronze plaques stripped off for scrap. Everything's relative.
posted by Meatbomb at 2:05 AM on June 20, 2011


I'm stunned, inasmuch as I am usually totally against vandalism. But this decoration seems like an incredible outbreak of sanity. Nothing degrades humanity more than war. Soldiers have already received the ultimate insult, by being murdered and turned into murderers by states. There's not much worse you can do to their statues than their governments have already done to them personally.
posted by Faze at 5:04 AM on June 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


I could see this being reinterprted as pro-Soviet vandalism. Couldn't the message be that Soviet era heros are being replaced by hollow American pseudo-heros? Either way though, pretty freakin funny.
posted by vorpal bunny at 8:22 AM on June 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


People who would approve of that interpretation wouldn't approve of the technique.
posted by hat_eater at 2:01 PM on June 20, 2011


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