September 3, 2015

Monuments have many sides to them

Dear Editor,

Monuments are really created to honour heroes and commemorate or celebrate historic events, depicting the national pride of countries. Their creation can be regarded as works of art and/or architecture that promote national consciousness and, at the same time, enrich history and add beauty.

Guyana has its fair share: Fort Zeelandia and the Court of Policy, Fort Nassau, Fort kyk-over-al, State House, Umana Yana and African Liberation Monument, Non-Aligned Monument, Red House, 1763 Monument, and St Georges Cathedral.

If replicas of these can be made and sold to people, especially tourists, then it means that income can be generated and tourism will be boosted. This definitely will help inform people about Guyana’s history.

Miniatures of great sculptures were first made by the masters, who then used a large labour force to build the great pieces that the world at large now reveres. That miniature was like the blue print. In fact, the classical Greek figures included such as Diana the Huntress, Discus Thrower, Nike, Athena Standing, Athena Bust, Venus de Milo and other legendary Graeco-Roman myth heroes and gods started from the statuettes, and then skilled labour was used to erect the actual figures for display.

Now modern technology can dispense with this ancient practice, and the reverse can really be used for so many good reasons. Guyana is beginning to make hinterland living very attractive and very soon many visitors will be frequenting such areas. I think that sculptors can start to use slabs of rocks and eventually the faces of mountains to carve out various figures.

Now one writer is calling for a monument for the 1964 Wismar massacre. Maybe more should call for monuments for other occasions and people. I agree that Guyanese must have national monuments which will remind us of our history, both sweet and bitter. Monuments will indeed inspire all of us, as well as add valuable knowledge to our minds.

Yours truly,

Bertrum Massiah

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