Terii’s Cycling Babble

Craziness In Copenhagen » 07-15 az Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid

One of Denmark’s most famous landmarks and she’s had a rough go of it.

The statue was commissioned in 1909 by Carl Jacobson, son of the founder of Carlsberg Beer, who had been fascinated by the ballet about the fairytale in Copenhagen’s royal Theater. He asked ballerina Ellen Price to model for the bronze statue created by sculpture Edvard Eriksen. The head was modeled after price, but she would not agree to pose nude, so the sculptor’s wife, Eline Eriksen was used for the body. It was unveiled on August 23, 1913.

The statue has been damaged and defaced many times since the mid-1960’s for various reasons, but has been restored each time. In 2006, Copenhagen officials announced the statue may be moved further into the harbor to avoid further vandalism and prevent tourists from climbing on it.

April 24, 1964, the head was sawed off and stolen by politically oriented artists of the Situationist movement, among them Jørgen Nash. It was never recovered and a new head was made. On July 22, 1984, the right arm was removed, but returned 2 days later by a pair of young men. In 1990, an attempt to sever the statue’s head left a cut in the neck 18 cm (7 in) deep.

On January 6, 1998, the mermaid was decapitated again. The culprits were never found, but the head was returned anonymously and reattached on February 4th. On the night of September 10, 2003, the statue was blown off its rock with explosives and later found in the harbor water. Holes were blasted in her wrist and knee.

In 2004, she was draped in a burqa in protest against Turkey joining the EU. In May 2007, she was again dressed in Muslim garb and head scarf.

She has also been drenched in paint several times. March 8, 2006 green paint was dumped over it with the words ‘March 8’ written in it. It is suspected that time, the vandalism was associated with International Women’s Day which is March 8th.

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