US first lady Melania Trump statue set ablaze in Slovenia
ROZNO (SLOVENIA) – A wooden sculpture of US first lady Melania Trump was set aflame near her hometown of Sevnica, Slovenia, on the night of July Fourth, as Americans observed US Independence Day, said the artist who commissioned the sculpture.
Brad Downey, a Berlin-based American artist, told the life-sized sculpture was blackened and disfigured, which he had gotten removed as soon as police informed him on July 5th of the incident.
“I want to know why they did it,” said Downey, who had hoped the statue would open a platform for a dialogue about the political situation in the United States. It aimed at highlighting Melania Trump’s status as an immigrant who was married to a president committed to reduce immigration.
In Washington, the office of Melania Trump did not immediately respond for a comment request.
In recent weeks, President Donald Trump has pledged to take strict steps on anyone vandalising US historical monuments, with political activism against injustice on the basis of race has swept across the country.
Downey, 39, said he had filed a police report and would like to talk with the culprits, if found, for a film he is preparing before his exhibition due to open in Slovenia in September.
Police spokeswoman Alenka Drenik told, “The investigation in this case has not been completed yet so we cannot reveal details due to the interest of further procedures.”
The figure was painted with a pale blue wraparound coat which looked exactly like the one Melania Trump wore at the swearing in of her husband US President Donald Trump.
The figure was carved with a chainsaw by local folk artist Ales Zupevc using the trunk of a living linden tree.
In January, a large wooden statue resembling Donald Trump, designed by a local artist last year, was also set burnt in Slovenia’s city of Moravce, east of the capital Ljubljana.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field.