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Tauno Kangro's Kalevipoeg rising from ashes

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PHOTO: Eero Vabamägi

The plan by sculptor Tauno Kangro for a giant statue «coming out» of Tallinn Bay has been resurrected.

The first time Mr Kangro tabled the idea of Kalevipoeg wading in the waters was in 1998. Though liked by city authorities then and now, the plan got stuck in lack of legal regulations regarding constructions in the sea.

«The sculpture is coming but at the moment the city government decided that while the legal foundations are not in place i.e. a separate law not passed in Riigikogu regarding building in the sea, we do not consider it right or feasible to proceed with the project,» said then deputy mayor Deniss Boroditš in November 2008.

That had been preceded by years of discussions and a public competition to erect the statue in the bay.

«I think they only submitted three works, as the conditions were so severe. Even I did basically a new work for the competition, the first variant was totally otherwise,» recalls Mr Kangro who won the competition organised to birth his own idea.

In the current phase of the endeavour, the sculptor is unwilling to elaborate. «This time, let’s do things in the right order. First the paperwork, get all the licences, and then to speak publicly,» he said.

The only thing Mr Kangro specified was that a non-profit organisation has been established to get all the paperwork done – a heap of documents considering the statue will tower 24 metres tall. They are not starting from the scratch, though, as part of the work was completed the last time around as financed by the city.

Deputy mayor Kalle Klandorf said the organisation has been around to introduce the plans. «The location and conditions were settled with maritime administration years ago. No the non-profit organisation presented their vision of how to go on. Lots of things to discuss here as the city has already invested a lot, a bit over two million kroons I think,» he said.

«We must see now how it goes and if they have the money for it. Also, several project designs must be updated as these have become outdated but this can be worked out. The organisation has promised to find the money and if they want to do it let them do it,» said the deputy mayor.

Mr Kangro said quite many people are interested in the statue and would be willing to support financially. «What matters most is doing the stature for donations. Because when people have donated, they feel a part of it, like a kind of fellowship, and the attitude is totally different,» he suggested.

He was unwilling to give an approximate price, only stressing it has come down significantly as new technologies have been meanwhile invented how to execute the project.

In the calculation presented to city government by ASBL Kalevipoja Kojutulek they have filled in an estimated €2.75m. Of that, the making of the stature is €1.5m, the making of the base €500,000, the instalment and electrical works €500,000 and design plus general costs €250,000.

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