Sergei Udovik

publisher, writer, journalist, photographer, analyst

Hayseed Solution Or African Option

By Serhiy UDOVYK

A man of taste is attracted by the austere lines and refined modesty of design in expensive equipment, cars, or architectural forms; simultaneously in the West motley objects and architectural solutions, overloaded with a huge amount of pretentious blazing details, also known as the African variation, are offered to the marginal masses.

Our monument, with its eclectics, smorgasbord of styles, and overload, corresponds to the best African variations. And its phallic shape seems to be intended to personify Ukraine’s absent masculinity. The monument, on the one hand, will undoubtedly confirm Western tourists’ condescending opinion of the Ukrainians as friendly Asiatic aborigines striving for European culture, and, on the other hand, will make happy the Muscovite intelligentsia with such an outstanding hayseed solution that will definitely eclipse their bleeding wound, Moscow’s monument to Tsar Peter I.

However, in addition to the aesthetic approach there is also an ethical one. And from the latter point of view, to spend almost 100,000,000 hryvnias on erecting a tasteless construction and simultaneously to complain that there is no money in the budget to provide even a minimum living wage in the fields of culture and health care is pure cynicism. If there happened to be some extra money in state budget, why not to spend it on equipping free youth cafes with digital VCRs in all oblasts, and to hold an open Internet-television bridge in Kyiv’s central square with the oblasts’ youth to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Ukrainian Independence; the more so, as the screen is already there, we only need to blend it with the square’s relief.

An Internet contact of the state leaders with young people at Independence Square would be great. Much better than a military parade, even for Western capitals.

The Day Weekly Digest, №30, Tuesday, 31 2000



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