Giant Columbus Statue ‘Discovers’ Puerto Rican Island
Posted on Aug 17, 2011
A 20-year-old statue of Christopher Columbus twice the height of the Statue of Liberty may have finally found a home on the shores of an uninhabited Puerto Rican island after first being shunned by several U.S. cities.
New York, Miami and Baltimore are among the cities that rejected the statue, which depicts Columbus with three billowing sails at his back and waving with unusually long arms in a way that has critics calling it “silly” and disproportionate.
The statue has been in storage in the Puerto Rican city of Mayaguez for most of its existence, a dusty, overgrown relic of what is no longer PC in America. But what U.S. cities have deemed expensive and just downright goofy, our island neighbor sees as a draw for tourism dollars. —BF
The Associated Press in The Washington Post:
Rep. David Bonilla filed a resolution asking the government to study the viability of installing the roughly 600-ton bronze statue, which is twice the height of the Statue of Liberty without its pedestal, on the tiny island of Desecheo.
The statue began its ill-fated, two-decade journey in 1991, when it was built by controversial Russian sculptor Zurab Tsereteli to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Columbus’ 1492 arrival in the Western Hemisphere.
It was rejected by New York, Miami, Baltimore and other cities for reasons ranging from cost to appearance before finally being accepted by Puerto Rico.
Flickr / KitAy (CC-BY)
The base of a much smaller statue of Christopher Columbus in Pittsburgh depicts the famed sails that also billow behind the giant statue.