Italian Sculptor’s Memorial Honors Whistleblowers

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( — May 3, 2015)  — Berlin, Germany – A provocative art piece has appeared in Alexanderplatz, the main square of the German capital. Julian Assange, editor-in-chief of the website WikiLeaks, Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning are memorialized in bronze as they look out at intrigued passers-by. The memorial reminds viewers that ordinary people can make a difference in the world.

“They have lost their freedom for the truth, so they remind us how important it is to know the truth,” Italian sculptor Davide Dormino told the media in Berlin’s Alexanderplatz.

The artwork, titled ‘Anything To Say?’, presents life-sized statues of the three whistleblowers, Assange, Snowden, and Manning, standing upon three chairs as if they are speaking to the public. Next to them is a fourth, empty chair, alluding that everyone passing by is called to come forward and speak loudly if there is something to be told.

“The fourth chair is open to anyone here in Berlin who wants to get up and say anything they want,” Dormino, the author, told Deutsche Welle.

“People are saying many different things. From politics to babbling to silence, from people who desperately are wanting to help Julian, Bradley and Edward to people who have no idea who they are. This chair is, I guess, a place of free speech,” Dormino told DW.

Reportedly, dozens of people, including children, have already stood up on the platform, some even with a loudspeaker, expressing themselves.

Bradley Manning, is serving 35 years in military prison for leaking US diplomatic cables in 2011, which lead to the diplomatic scandal. Manning has since changed her gender to female, and also changed her name to Chelsea, however, she is presented as a male US soldier in Dormino’s composition.

Julian Assange, who hosted Manning’s files on his Wikileaks website, remains in the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he was granted political asylum.  

Former intelligence agent Edward Snowden, who revealed the intricacies and reach of NSA surveillance technologies, has been marooned in an undisclosed location in Russia for nearly two years, Russia Today reported.

Dormino, who came up with the idea together with the US journalist Charles Glass, wanted to raise awareness of the injustice of men who order others to their deaths get immortalized, while those who resist them are often forgotten.

“The statue pays homage to three who said no to war, to the lies that lead to war and to the intrusion into private life that helps to perpetuate war,” Dormino said, adding he will tour the world’s most prominent public places, and even hopes to display the work in the United States.