Marble arab


A new chapter in the political corrections to the ‘monument for the Congo warrior’. See the ‘Congo Monument’ chapter for other posts.

At the spots in the text where it used to read ‘araabsche’ / ‘arabe’, black marble squares have been placed. Marble seems to be more resistant to scratching then the original sandstone of the sculpture, but judiging from the pieces of stone that you can see on the pedestal in front of the text panel, this doesn’t prevent scratchers from giving it a go.


And as you see on the first image: removing the entire piece is of course always an option.

Who has placed the marble blocks remains mysterious. A strange decision to place these blocks. Why black ? If the idea was to draw attention to the cultural problematics that are expressed by the debate around the inclusion / removal of the words, the intentions have succeeded. The aesthetic mismatch of the two materials is so big that from far the eye is drawn to the text in which they are fitted. See the picture below.
The marble is easily associated with the material tombstones are made of, their aim seems to be to cover up what lies beneath them.

Furthermore, the effect of the hard black stone is emphasised the terrible renovation job that was done two years ago to ‘clean’ the sculpture by sandblasting it. Yes, the surface of the monument is ‘whiter’, the mosses that covered it have gone, but the work has flattened the relief of the whole monument, the figures faces have lost their expression, and the decorations have lost their edges; and the texts in particular are much harder to read now, they needed the sharp shadowed edges to be legible.
Open for debate is who is doing more damage to the sculpture: those who renovate it or those who oppose it?

The physical and political actions surrounding the texts are crying out for a panel to contextualise the contestation of the monument.


ps: Thanks to the commenter I found it is an artwork by Pierre Lizin. See his discription here: