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Citizen Powered Sculpture – Travelling Wall

by Eric Andersen

An immense solid coffin was constructed from 10,000 square concrete tiles. Each weighing 7 kilos, the tiles were easy to move but difficult to throw.  Signs resembling road signs encouraged members of the public to remove one or more tiles from one end of the coffin. The signs also announced that a similar number of tiles would be added to the opposite end of the sculpture the following day.

Depending on how keen the public were, the sculpture would slowly advance across the square, perhaps towards then over the cathedral, towards the fjord, out into the water and down to the seabed, only to appear decades later in Oslo on its way to the North Pole.

During the week of the festival, the 70 tons of tiles moved a total of 6 meters and not one window was broken. The shape of the sculpture developed from domino games to pagoda towers and elaborated on the endless variations of the axis of symmetry.

Eric Andersen later negotiated with the Checkpoint Charlie Museum in West Berlin to have a permanent citizen-powered sculpture of 100,000 tiles built at Brandenburger Tor. However, the local authorities blocked its construction, fearing it would migrate across the nearby wall and head towards China. The wall in Roskilde was sponsored by stone masons SF-Sten.

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