Olli Thomson

Single Shot – The Bronze House

The Bronze House, by Bulgarian artist Plamen Dejanoff, stands in Sofia’s Prince Alexander of Battenberg Square on the site once occupied by the mausoleum of Georgi Dimitrov, former leader of the Bulgarian Communist Party and Prime Minister of Bulgarian from 1946-1949. Dimitrov’s body was embalmed and placed on display in the mausoleum during the years of communist rule but removed, cremated and the ashes buried in 1990 following the collapse of the regime. There was considerable dispute about what to do with the mausoleum, with some proposing to turn it into a museum or gallery while others argued that it should be destroyed. Eventually, in 1999, the government of the day ordered its destruction and it was blown up. As far as I know this new work is the first use of the site since then.

Though Bulgarian, Dejanoff is based in Austria and the work was installed in late 2017 to celebrate Bulgaria’s six month presidency of the European Union Council in the first half of 2018, the first time Bulgaria has held the position. The work will remain in place for the second half of 2018 which coincides with Austria’s presidency of the Council. The picture above was taken last night while standing inside the sculpture looking straight up at the sky. The picture below shows the setting.

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