A huge bronze statue of Karl Marx designed by a world-renowned Chinese sculptor has finally been accepted by the authorities in the revolutionary philosopher's birth town of Trier in Germany.
A wooden model of a Chinese gift statue of Karl Marx stands in a square in Trier, Germany. [Photo: People's Daily]
The statue - standing 6.3-meters (about 21-feet) - was created by Wu Weishan, who is the director of the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC), reports Deutsch Welle.
Interviewed by People's Daily, the artist said the statue symbolized the "development of Marxism" as well as his respect for the revolutionary philosopher whose image, he said, had been rooted in his heart since childhood.
The gift was reportedly intended to honor the bicentennial of Karl Marx's birth, due to take place on May 5, 2018, and to serve as a symbol of the strong Sino-German ties.
But there were objections from people who thought such a giant statue wouldn't fit the city's classical Simeonstiftplatz square. Some expressed possible political concerns.
Early this month, Trier put up a wooden version of the statue in the square to give residents an idea of how the gift might look.
On Monday evening, March 13, the majority of Trier's city council voted in favor of acceptance with the exact details of the statue to be discussed at a later date.
"Karl Marx is one of the city's most famous sons, and we should not hide him," Wolfram Leibe, Trier mayor and Social Democratic (SPD), told the public broadcaster SWR before the vote.
Trier, the city where Karl Marx was born on May 5, 1818 and where he spent his first 17 years before leaving for Bonn, Berlin, and Paris, is reportedly preparing a special exhibition for its famous son's 200th anniversary next year.
Trier welcomes about 150,000 Chinese tourists every year, for whom "the birthplace of the father of communism" is highlighted as a major attraction. Andreas Ludwig, city councilor of Trier who took the gift as "a big honor", predicted the number would increase after the statue's arrival, adding that "the biggest country in the world (in terms of population) thinking about the little city of Trier is great." Der Spiegel reported.