Larger than life statues are simultaneously the most beautiful and the most terrifying thing I’ve ever seen in my life. It’s always been like that. To the best of my knowledge, there was never any trauma involved, so barring a past life – or extra-terrestrial – experience, there really is no logical explanation. One day when I’ll have had enough on the stock market and have the right traveling partner (someone who gets this insane reaction and is able to push me just far enough for me to face this but not so much that it sends me over the edge), I will travel the world and visit each and everyone of them, just to get over this reaction. I call it that, because it’s not crippling, I’m still able to function, I don’t structure my walks so I can avoid them if I happen to be in a town that has one (or two). I am deeply fascinated by them, to the point of approaching them with the utmost respect and caution, but I will do so with utmost trepidation.
Like I said, one day I will go and visit them all, but until that day, I have my memories of the megaliths that scared me. There’s the Gellért statue in Budapest (Freedom Statue to be exact, but what’s in a name, eh?), and the humans in the water I’d see every time I somehow ended up at Warschauerstr. in Berlin. Those things were minuscule in comparison, but they made me want to jump out of my skin every time I saw them. Speaking of Berlin, coming up to Tegelhof airport was no picnic either, but looking outside was fine. Paradoxically, in Jersey, working with younger kids at day camp, going to see the Statue of Liberty posed no problem at all, and neither did being in New York City. I’ve always loved skyscrapers. But those larger than life humans . . . maybe my deliberate altering of their names was a subconscious effort to control them. Because if I can control them, I can control the fear, or the discomfort, whatever you want to call it.
Enter the Colossus of Rhodes. I heard of it, because I’m subscribed to Ancient Origins on Facebook, and they ran an article. In one sentence, it is an idea of pure, simple and utmost genius to bring it to life again. I found this quote on their YouTube channel, and that just makes me like the project and these guys even more.
Though watching the video made my blood freeze and propelled me straight under the covers, my first thought was to send a message to a potential travel companion with the words, no matter where we are when this is finished, no matter what we’re doing in life, we are so going there when it’s completed. My second reaction was to show this to anyone not smart enough to leave my place after Christmas, because they knew this would happen. Immediately an argument ensued, all before reading anything on the subject.
Sceptic: Who’s funding this?
Colossus of Rhodes Fan: Various organizations, patrons, societies, crowdfunding.
Sceptic: To what purpose?
CoRF: To show what people felt back then, to boost the economy, consolidate history.
Sceptic: So the EU does have money? And it’s coming out of our taxes.
CoRF: No one’s taking your taxes. Rich people are paying, they can afford it, they want to do this, no one’s holding a gun to their head.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat.
Until. Sceptic, having read some more reviews, taking another look at the video: He’s beautiful. His face, it’s absolutely beautiful.
Maybe the boost to the economy seems obvious. But it’s the best feeling in the world to see that you and the people who created a project you could stand behind one million percent think alike. Not just because it gives you a feeling of kinship, but also because it shows that you’re not alone in the way you view the world. And to be preachy for one second, what better proof of art being necessary in the world is there if art saves the day where economic experts failed?!
On a personal level, having “engaged” with the project over the past four hours, makes me want to declare peace on my arch enemy and do something really and truly nice for the schmuck. If art makes just a fraction of us feel that way, and we had something similar in all war torn areas – a collaborative effort, brought to life by several individuals to remind us of mutual glories of the past, present or past – couldn’t we bring about world peace in no time?
For more, and it’s a must-see, check out the project on http://colossusrhodes.com
ALL PHOTOS ARE STILLS TAKEN FROM THE VIDEO http://youtu.be/vM6_FoDrNeA AND PHOTO-MANIPULATED BY Helsinkilives