Carol I returns

Probabil ca momentul ales pentru consultarea cetatenilor orasului in legatura cu oportunitatea reamplasarii statuii ecvestre a lui Carol I in fata BCU din Piata Palatului are mare legatura cu alegerile locale de la 1 iunie. Este superfrustrant ca ni se cere parerea intr-un caz in care care proportia celor care sunt de acord este probabil absolut covarsitoare si ca nu ni s-a cerut parerea in legatura cu Tzeapa lui Ghildus. Personal sper ca ecvestra sa fie finisata pentru ca figura lui Carol este putin umflata cu o barba stufoasa si nu prea seamana (nu cred ca e vorba de optiuni plastice ale autorului). Sper mai ales ca statuia sa nu fie inconjurata de masini si sugrumata de panouri publicitare (asa cum se intampla cu multe alte statui) si acesta sa fie un prim pas spre transformarea pietii palatului intr-o zona in care cetatenii orasului sunt respectati si se pot misca liberi, fara a fi agresati. Cred ca este important ca edilii sa-si puna problema ce vede Carol de sus de acolo. Cred ca respectul fata de o personalitate istorica tine de felul in care statuia acesteia este facuta si ceea ce o inconjoara. Nu cred ca lui Carol i-ar fi placut sa aiba in apropiere un cacat pe bat gigant, masini si reclame asa cum nu cred ca Balcescu ar fi vrut sa fie portretizat fara picioare si cea mai veche fantana din Bucuresti sa fie demontata pentru a-i face loc...

Am incercat cu greu sa gasesc locurile de pe cele doua site-uri unde sa ne putem spune parerea. nu functioneaza si pe nu am gasit nimic. Poate a fost cineva mai descurcaret decat mine...

Linkuri utile:
Anca Benera - The red rider
Articol Cotidianul
Articol EVZ


Anonymous said...

Foarte faină iniţiativa, dar mi se pare mie, sau au pus termopane Fundaţiei Culturale Carol I ?

Raiden said...

da, au pus la parter, la centrul de informare europeana (o inutilitate).

statuia nici nu se compara cu cea originala a lui mestrovic, dar asa e la noi, hai sa ne zgarcim. l-au platit pe acest codre sa imite statuia distrusa in 1948. nu prea i-a reusit.

totusi, e bine ca au facut ceva in legatura cu statuia, pana acum se auzisera doar zvonuri.

Anonymous said...

O surpriza placuta. Arata bine si se potriveste si "fizic" si istoric cu zona. Iar despre povestea cu parerea bucurestenilor, chiar daca nu functioneaza extraordinar, e bine ca exista aceasta initiativa.
Acum sa se puna si o urna cu pareri si langa Teapa. Si un mic tarnacop langa, sa ne putem exprima.

Anonymous said...

Si ie mi se pare ca are un "iuz" arte electoral. Si nu doar asta! Mai sunt o gramada de alte "fapte bune" ramase inca "nepedepsite"!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

" There is an awful lot of confusion based on false statements in the Romanian Media concerning the Ivan Mestrovic statue of King Carol I and Kinf Ferdinand . It's a shame and someone from the MCC or the City Hall is just washing his hands...

I am the daughter-in-law of Ivan Mestrovic . I am of a Bulgarian-German descent , professor of Classical languages, specialized in Roman Law and World Heritage. My husband is Prof. Dr. Matthew Mestrovic , the son of Ivan Mestrovic. Matthew spent most of his life in the U.S. since his father left Yugoslavia because of the Communist regime. He holds a Ph.D. from Columbia University in Modern European History . He was a Contributing Editor of ”TIME” magazine and for decades university professor of Modern European history in the US. He was the president of the Croatian National Congress, a deputy in the Croatian Parliament , member of Croatia’s delegation to the Council of Europe and the Interparliamentary Union and Croatian ambassador in Bulgaria . So he doesn't lack the level for proper communication or negotiations with the Romanian state . But ...

The important issues that I want to share with you are the following :

1.We consider the work of Mr. Codre a plagiarism of Mestrovici's monument of HM Carol I since any remodeling or reshaping of a sculpture without the permission of the copyright holder is a violation of the law. The copyright for all of Ivan Mestrovic's sculptures belongs to us, his 4 heirs till 2032, according the Copyright Law .We were never asked by the Bucharest City Hall to grant such a permission .Therefore any action taken in connection with the equestrian statues of the Romanian monarchs destroyed by the communists in 1948 is illegal , if it is taken without the written authorization of the four heirs , who jointly hold the copyright (irrespectively of the ownership of a particular sculpture) . This can be confirmed by any lawyer specialized in copyright law. You can draw a conclusion also by comparing the attached photos of the old monument and Codre's version.

2. Even if we ignore the legal side of the problem , the sculptor F. Codre , who is an abstractionist, is the least appropriate artist to make a statue after Mestrovici's original because Mestrovici was a figurative artist . You can see that by comparing the art of Codre ( see the next e-mail concerning Codre) and a selection of Mestrovic art sent in a separate e-mail. Codre should have made something responding to his style, because the statue of HM Carol I he made looks like Mestrovici after a plastic surgery operation.

3.The Romanian MCC officials must have given to the media a lot of misinterpretations, wrong information and false claims , not to say lies and slanders ( because I do not believe that the journalists have invented them) .

- It is not true that for 2 years negotiations went on with us.There were no negotiations since negotiations mean a process and there was only single contact with us.

The exact chronology supported by documents is :

-30 March 2006 , before we were contacted in any way, false and suggestive information appeared in the media (see for example ). It is a slander that Mestrovici's heirs would ask 3 million Euro for the copyright of a small plaster or model ( 50 cm ) of HM Carol I . The first lie is that we ever asked for any amount of money - we never did ! We also were never offered any money from any Romanian or Croatian Ministry of Culture official or any other state official! The plasters or models of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand that are our private property are approx. 3 meters high , not 50 cm. ( one is property of my husband Matthew Mestrovic and one of his nephew.The statue, are in the Gliptoteka which mixed up their titles) .

-20 April 2006, the Mestrovic Foundation (Mestrovic Museums) director officially informed in writing the Romanian MCC who exactly are the four Mestrovici's heirs, incl. their addresses.

- June 2006, MCC delegation came to see the original plasters of the two equestrian statues of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand kept in Gliptoteka ( The Glyptotheque of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts) in Zagreb . Nobody informed or invited the heirs on that occasion. Let MCC explain why nobody tried to see , talk or communicate at least with Prof. Dr. Matthew Mestrovic, Ivan Mestrovic's heir who lives in Zagreb ( besides residing in New York ) and who was in Zagreb during the visit of MCC delegation? Isn't it absurd if MCC really wanted something to be achieved ? At this point the Romanian MCC had the official information who are the four Mestrovic heirs, that jointly hold the copyright . The Mestrovic heirs heard about this visit much later from an unofficial source . Why the Romanian officials are excusing themselves with some alleged negotiations with the Croatian Ministry of Culture since the statues in question are not state property nor does the copyright belong to the Croatian state?

-20 July 2006,a letter to Matthew Mestrovic ( also perhaps identical letters to the other three heirs ) from Andrew Popper, Master of HM King Michael’s Household, Elisabeth Palace , expressing the intension to re-erect the two statues- of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand .

-11 August 2006 , letter to Matthew Mestrovic ( identical letters were sent to the other three heirs) from Secretary of State Virgil Stefan Nitulescu(MCC), expressing the intension to re-erect the two statues- of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand .

-21 August 2006* , answer to Andrew Popper by Matthew Mestrovic approving and strongly supporting the project and asking for the specific conditions, arrangements , technicalities etc. Some further contacts till Oct.2006 without specific success or final conclusion .

* forwarded to the Romanian embassy in Zagreb

-21 August 2006*, answer to Secretary of State Virgil Stefan Nitulescu , MCC, by Matthew Mestrovic greatly approving , strongly supporting the project and asking for the specific conditions, arrangements , technicalities etc. We never got any response to this letter.

* forwarded to the Romanian embassy in Zagreb

-11 Oct. 2006 , by e- mail first and only contact coming from H.E. Oana Popa (Ambassador, Romanian Embassy in Zagreb) . we concluded that MCC gave up the project and decided that a Romanian sculptor would make modern statues of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand...until 03 May 2008 when we were informed, again in unofficial way by some Romanian friends, about Codre's plagiarism - the statue of HM Carol after/inspired by Mestrovic ( unveiled in Bucharest) .We still don't know what will happen with the monument of HM Ferdinand. Perhaps F. Codre will make another plagiarism after/inspired by Mestrovic?

- It is not true what ministrul Culturii, Adrian Iorgulescu said "that the Romanian state did everything to purchase the copyright" etc*.

The Romanian state never offered us( nor did we ever ask ) the alleged 4 million EURO or any other amount of money for the copyright, just for the model of the statue of HM Carol I from the Croatian Ministry of Culture or by the Romanian MCC .

* )

This way the Romanian officials are accusing the Croatian government of playing unfair or a double game. The Croatian Ministry of Culture actually is accused for giving wrong information to the Romanian side or hiding from the heirs the negotiations that have been held behind the back of Mestrovic's heirs . Where are the proofs ? Let Mr. Oroveanu , Mr. Virgil Stefan Nitulescu or any Romanian official show to us or to you the documents on which are based all these invented claims. It is an attempt to manipulate Romanian society by the allegation that we , the heirs or one of us, caused the collapse of the project !

It is not true that by decision of the Tribunal in the Hague Ivan Mestrovic was paid by the Romanian state damages for his statues of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand , that were destroyed in 1948 by the Communists ( we read this false claim in numerous Romanian sources ) .

Let MCC or any Romanian officials prove this false claim with some documents or at least let them say when such a monetary compensation was executed. It is only true that by law such damages had to be covered , but who can imagine that during the Communist Regime such a measure could have been undertaken, while Ivan Mestrovic was still alive ( he died in 1962). Since the democratic changes occurred in Romania nobody of the four Mestrovici heirs sought such a compensation in any court of law , even though it was a legal right .

Our point is that we do not insist on restoring the destroyed Mestrovic statues, but it is unacceptable that his art be plagiarized, deformed or abused . Let the abstractionist Mr. Codre make a dozen Carol I statues, if he wants and if the Romanian officials are eager to pay him from the taxpayer pockets , but let it be clear that his creations have nothing to do with the figurative sculptor Ivan Mestrovic. It is ridiculous that Mr. Florin defends himself from the accusations of plagiarism by stating that all the equestrian statues in the world look similar and that consequently they can all be proclaimed plagiarisms *...Sapienti sat ! Let him consult any lawyer specialized in copyright .

* ...

For years on different unofficial levels and occasions my husband was promoting the idea of the restoration of the monuments of King Carol I and King Ferdinand . And now he has to read the Romanian paper to understand what was actually going on behind his back? Who is going to take responsibility for this huge scandal ? Are there any consequences for the one/ones who lied because of petty reasons ( or big financial ones ?) , abusing the names of King Carol I , King Ferdinand and Ivan Mestrovic ?
The sad thing is that what happened now is such a dirty spot , all the more that my husband had always talked in a great and positive way about Romania since his father was close friend with King Carol II and some of Matthew 's best memories were from his childhood - when HM Carol II paid a visit to the Mestrovi'c summer place in Split or when his father was creating these two statues, the monument to Bratianu , the portrait to Mrs. Bratianu and some Romanian diplomats...
Thank you for being sincere with us. I can also be sincere and tell you so far what is the opinion of most of the copyright and other kind of lawyers we contacted : In Romania you have little chances to win even in such a flagrant case , because of the system , the corruption on high levels, the nepotism spite of the membership in the EU ! Contact foreign media, TV , papers and courts ! We feel it sounds pretty sad . Obviously we had illusions for the democracy in your country , because of our emotional connection with Romania, based on Ivan Mestrovic affection towards you people.
We consider the problem with MCC and Codre to be more important for your own people. Mestrovic does not need two renovated statues to prove that he was one of the greatest sculptors since the Renaissance. All his works and life proved it. The reconstruction of the equestrian statues of HM Carol I and HM Ferdinand was meant to be great symbol for the rebuilt democracy and a historical gesture , concerning the Romanians : Romania had great political figures and great past - a firm base for it's blossoming future and a guarantee for it's special place the united modern european familly.

We hope that the most important is that the truth come out and that the democratic Romanian state give back to your people the real values and perspectives , lost under Communism . The history and the culture of a nation , of a state , define their future and prosperity .We are deeply convinced that the Romanian people will succeed in this.
Sincerely ,Prof. Rumiana Mestrovic


Anonymous said...

" Dear Mr. Codre,
I am sorry that you reacted in the way you did without explaining your motivation or trying to establish a civilized dialogue, which I would have done if I knew your email address. Since you obviously have my email address I am surprised that you are sending me only an impersonal message and photos .
Anyway, thank you for the pictures of you art. Unfortunately I can't open the attached documents.
I hope you know English well enough to understand my point of view in connection with your statue of HM Carol I , which is "inspired" or "modeled " after my late father-in-law Ivan Mestrovic. My subjective and professional opinion is that we are facing a plagiarism , which violates the Copyright Law and the collegiality among artists .
Besides , especially now, when I saw quite a number of your sculptures , I am absolutely convinced that you and Mestrovic are very different in your artistic expression , conceptions and style. So even if it was not the legal problem of violating the copyright (by redoing or changing an original work of another artist without his consent or the consent of his heirs as copyright holders) , you , dear Mr. Codre, were not the best choice for reconstructing the original Mestrovic's monument of HM Carol I of 1939 , since you aesthetical expression and style is completely different .You were much better off to create a totally new statue of HM Carol I , in harmony with your artistic inspiration and synchronized with your time, taste and tradition of sculpting .
I am not going to discuss the political issues involved , because it is not my business. I am underlining the fact that I am a strong supporter of the idea of erecting monuments to HM Carol I , to HM Ferdinand and other great figures from the Romanian history whom the Communist tried to delete from the peoples memory and hearts .
I am not discussing also the subject whether I like or dislike your art . This is irrelevant for the issue we discuss. All the more ,
I am sure you know the Latin expression "De gustibus et coloribus non est desputandum" ...
Even if the Mayor of Bucharest had commissioned the "remake" of Mestrovic's statue to Mark di Suvero, Robert Indiana, Ion Irimescu, Arnaldo Pomodoro or Vezhdi Rashidov (I admire them all ) still I would have not taken it as a good choice or adequate solution, for the same reasons , for which I am opposed to your reconstruction of HM Carol I or what ever you call it.
I hope that my attached letter , addressed to some Romanian intellectuals will be useful for you in a deeper reflection .

Sincerely, Prof. Rumiana Mestrovic (Rumi)


Original Message ----- From: Rumi ...

Dear Sir ,
It was a good idea to restore the statue of Carol I, but the new one is a pure plagiarism.Compare the new equestrian statue with the old Mestrovici's monument and the original plaster kept in Zagreb! The Copyright law forbids not only illegal copies but as well plagiarizing. It is like Mestrovic after plastic surgery ! Why they simply did not commission from the Romanian sculptor a new equestrian statue - according to his vision, not as they said " Bucharest City Hall assigned the project to the sculptor Florin Codre, who is going to design an original statue of Carol inspired by Meštrović's model"? The "inspiration " is copying in a weird way the original, killing the style of Mestrovic and just using his name .The next thing the Mayor of Bucharest can do is to commission someone to " reshape in a modern style" the Statue of Liberty or Michelangelo's David - it should be even easier because these two artists have lost the copyright ...
My comment is not against the idea of having the statue of Regele Carol I. But the proper thing was to restore the real monument and one day Bucharest to get a new cast of statue of Ferdinand , destroyed also in 1948, even better and bigger statue of Mestrovici, who besides was a close friend of Carol II.The work of Florin Codre disgraces the art taste of Romanians. It is a shame if an individual plagiarizes, but when the State does it is a shock. How can the Government expect the ordinary Romanian citizens to obey the laws? Now the citizens of Bucharest got a fake monument with " glittering make up ", instead of something of a real historical and artistic value. Instead of stressing the symbol- to restore what the Communists destroyed and melted to use for a statue of Lenin ! Now at Piaţa Revoluţiei one sees the quasi-statue of the movie director Codre who is know only for sculpted Avram Iancu in Targu Mures in 1978 again " renewing" other people's art rather than creating his own.
I thought that Romania became a real democratic country , since it's a member of the EU and NATO. One of the aspects of the democracy is respect for the law. So I simply wonder why it was necessary to make a forgery and a plagiarism instead of creating something new or restoring the old statue from the 3 meters perfectly preserved original plaster ? And if some new equestrian statue was to be commissioned why such a "sculptor " was chosen instead of some illustrious Romanian name? Do you think that Codre is the best Romanian sculptor ?
I don't think too much of an artist who will at age of 65 rather copy and imitate another artist than to make his own piece of art.
I am not a blood relative of Ivan Mestrovic , not even Croatian. I am of a Bulgarian-German descent , professor of Classical languages, specialized in Roman Law and World Heritage. My husband is Prof. Dr. Matthew Mestrovic , the son of Ivan Mestrovic. Matthew spent all his life in the U.S. since his father run away from Yugoslavia because of the Communist. He holds a Ph.D. from Columbia University in Modern European History . He was a Contributing Editor of ”TIME” magazine and for decades university professor of Modern European history. He was the president of the Croatian National congress, a deputy in the Croatian Parliament , member of Croatia’s delegation to the Council of Europe and the Interparliamentary Union and Croatian ambassador in Bulgaria . So he doesn't lack the level for proper communication with the Romanian state . But...
We got a letter from the Ministry of Culture, from Secretary of State Virgil Stefan Nitulescu in August 2006 and in July 2006 from Andrew Popper, Master of HM King Michael’s Household, Elisabeth Palace. We immediately responded and since then we never heard from the Ministry of Culture. So we though that the Romanian Government for some reason gave up the project... until now when we saw this plagiarism. We were never contacted by the Mayor of Bucharest .
The plasters of Carol and Ferdinand in excellent shape are still kept in the Zagreb Gliptoteka. The copyright belongs still to us , the Mestrovic heirs . There was even a Romanian state delegation to Zagreb and they saw the original two equestrian status.
Two years ago in connection with this project my husband phoned several times Mrs. Carmen Iliescu , the Second Secretary and Head of Consular Department of the Embassy of Romania in the Republic of Croatia asking to meet the Romanian Ambassador in Zagreb , but never received even an acknowledgment nor , according to the diplomatic protocol and bon ton, was contacted back by H.E. Oana-Cristina Popa , which was all the more surprising, since the Romanian ambassador in Croatia studied at Notre Dame , Indiana, where Ivan Mestrovic was sculptor in residence during the last years of his life, and H.E. Popa is surely familiar with Mestrovic's art which is prominently displayed at Notre Dame, Chicago and elsewhere in the US . We forwarded a long time ago to the Romanian embassy in Zagreb the relevant documents for the models of the kings Carol and Ferdinand , in spite of their passive attitude and strange disinterest . . .
It was not important for Mestrovic his destroyed statue to be recast.
But I thought it was important for the Romanian people to see that the democratic Romanian state is restoring the values lost under the Communism ...
These days I read all sort of wrong information, not to use stronger words , in the Romanian papers... But I don't want to impose on you . If you want to get more information on the subject feel free to contact me .
Thank you for time spent reading my message.

My kind regards, Prof. Rumiana Mestrovic"

Anonymous said...

For more about Ivan Mestrovic see