Life of mini sculptures
Not one excursion in Uzhgorod omits mini-sculptures that harmoniously fit into the landscape of the city.
Uzhhorod is the smallest regional center in Ukraine. Maybe this was the incentive for the local sculptor Mikhail Kolodko to create and install a series of small sculptures in the city. The author considers them to be effective components of establishing cultural communication between Uzhgorod and Europe.
“Our region is rich in interweaving of cultures that have been built here for centuries. That is what we wanted to convey in sculpture. We did not do this with the help of large, expensive monuments. The miniature is much cheaper, and perhaps more interesting,” said Mikhail.
In Uzhgorod there are now 30 of these small, interesting interests, at least as many tourism scholars Fyodor Sandor counted, because the author himself admits that he never set himself the goal of counting them. Uzhgorod residents, and especially tourists, are happy to find them, take pictures and listen to stories about their creation. There are even special excursions that are carried out on sculptures. They became a kind of “chip” of the city. The installation of small monuments is a good tradition.
Currently, the city has the following small monuments: a family of hedgehogs, a knot tied in memory of the legendary strongman from Transcarpathia, Ivan Firtsake, Schweik, Svobodka, Rubik’s Cube, Ferenc Liszt, assistant to St. Nicholas, “Carpathia”, John Lord, Andrei Vargol, sergeant Mikhail Shtrank, small fish dedicated to the small Uzhu, Mozart, Harry Houdini, the robber Nikolai Shugai, Andy Warhol, the Eiffel Tower, Michael Strenk, the artist Gluck, dummy-painting, sculpture of winemaking. And also – the first telephone, a carriage in which they said goodbye to Lenin, a bell of freedom and a bronze television with the eternal “swan lake”. All mini sculptures are sanctified.
The most famous and, perhaps, the most beloved mini-sculpture among locals and tourists is Svobodka. Officially, it is called the “Ungvar Lighthouse” and is dedicated to the Transcarpathian fleet. It is the smallest statue of Liberty in the world and at the same time the smallest operating lighthouse. Michael notes that the sculpture, in addition to the aesthetic and entertaining functions, is also very symbolic and philosophical.
Mini-sculpture Ungvar Lighthouse, Uzhgorod Mini-sculpture Ungvar Lighthouse, Uzhgorod
We can talk a lot about freedom big and small, financial and territorial. Therefore, it is this statue that makes everyone think about their own freedom. And the symbolism of Freedom, the sculptor believes, has not yet been fully disclosed for today. Not a single large and festive action in the city is possible without Freedom: it is preended and dressed in the appropriate outfit.
Mini-sculpture Lighthouse Ungvar, Uzhhorod
The soldier Schweik, who is known to many connoisseurs of humor Yaroslav Hasek around the world. The place on the railing was not chosen by chance: it was there that they were pierced by wartime bullets. Little Schweik holds dumplings in his hands and, holding a hat, looks along the river.
“A small knot for memory” – here is a mini-monument dedicated to the strongman Croton. In 1928, this Transcarpathian, whose real name was Ivan Firtsak, was the strongest man on the planet, and it is about him that the full-length Ukrainian film “Ivan Strela” is released this year.
Mini-sculpture Soldier Schweik, Uzhgorod
The Iglaevsky hedgehogs were established in honor of the Days of Czech Culture in 2013, since they symbolize the wonderful Hedgehog beer, which is brewed in the Czech Iglava, the twin city of Uzhgorod.
Carpathia is the only ship that responded to the Titanic SOS signal and was the first to pick up passengers from the rescue boat. The monument also contains a little secret: inside it you can put a lit candle, thanks to the fire of which, the glow of the portholes of a small steamer will be visible.
Mini-sculpture Iglaevsky hedgehogs, UzhgorodMini-sculpture Carpathia, Uzhgorod
Mozart, although he was an Austrian, but during his life Transcarpathia was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, so on the birthday of the great musician, in January 2015, it was decided to erect a monument to him.
A small monument to Ferenc Liszt, which was opened in May 2012 near the Uzhgorod Philharmonic, survived almost the most adventures from among all of today’s article participants. In the summer, after a severe thunderstorm, the chestnut branch fell on the railing, breaking them into several parts: and the part on which the Hungarian composer “sat” mysteriously disappeared. However, the sculpture was soon found. The misfortunes did not end there: in December, unknown persons painted a piece of the pipe yellow, and in the early days of 2013 Liszt was again stolen. A few days later, the public utilities found a sculpture on the banks of the river and installed it in its place.
Mini-sculpture Mozart, Uzhgorod; Mini-sculpture Ferenc Liszt, Uzhgorod
Harry Houdini. Despite the fact that the famous illusionist was born in Budapest, he has Ukrainian roots, it is not strange: his grandmother is from the Transcarpathian village of Storozhnitsa.