A wooden structure of the US First lady Melania near her house in Slovenia, unveiled on 5th July 2019, was torched on July 4th, 2020 when the US Celebrated its Independence day. Mrs. Trump, a model who grew up in Slovenia when it was part of Yugoslavia, moved to the US in the 1990s, and after President Donald Trump won the elections in 2016, Slovenia became a tourist magnet and a backdrop to know more about Miss Trump and her early life.
The disfigured, mutilated and blackened statue was removed by Brad Downey, a Berlin-based American Artist, who commissioned the sculpture. He said he removed the statue as soon as he was informed about the disfigurement of it on July 5th, 2020.
“I want to know why they did it,” said Downey, who had hoped this action would foster a dialogue about the political situation in the United States, highlighting Melania Trump’s status as an immigrant married to a president who is sworn to reduce immigration in America.
However, there is no immediate response or comment from the office of Lady Melania in Washington DC. Lately, President Trump has pledged to take strict action on anyone who destroys the US historical monuments and he clearly took a hardline against this in his Independence day address. This happened because the activism against racial injustice is increasing in the country and taking place at political levels.
The figure though originally unrecognizable from the face, was painted in a blue wrap-around dress or coat that is similar to the coat that Lady Melania wore at President Trump’s swearing-in ceremony with her club-like hand gesturing to the sky.
The figure was carved on the bark of a linden tree by Ales Zupevc, a local folk artist. An incident similar to this one took place in January where a wooden statue resembling Donald Trump was burnt in Slovenia’s city of Moravce.
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