Duisburg, 27 May 2016 – Former Federal Chancellor Gerhard Schröder unveiled the bronze statue “Echo of Poseidon” by Markus Lüpertz on Duisburg’s Mercatorinsel. From now on, this ten meter high bronze sculpture by sculptor Markus Lüpertz will be greeting ships when they enter the world’s largest inland port.
“The setting of Poseidon itself is very impressive, ” says former Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. “Floating above a five meter pedestal, he will survey his domain – the sea. Even in high water the God of the Seas will be on safe ground.” Schröder expressed hope that Poseidon’s greetings will not only be warmly welcomed by mariners, but also by many other visitors who may make their way to see the “Echo of Poseidon”. “The journey to this site and an encounter with this wonderful large sculpture is certainly worth a visit, ” concludes Schröder.
A special event for Duisburg, at a unique location. Markus Lüpertz has long had an eye on the Mercatorinsel as the location for a sculpture. Following a number of in-depth discussions, sketches and visits to the site with the CEO of duisport, Erich Staake, the artist knew: the exposed location at the junction of the Rhine and Ruhr was the perfect site for a large sculpture. “With its surprising roughness, this is the ideal place. Because of its setting with the river and the bridge, I always had my eye on the island – a dream, ” emphasizes Lüpertz.
Markus Lüpertz – painter, sculptor, graphic artist and poet – is one of Germany’s most important contemporary artists. His first artistic home was on the Niederrhein, where the former artist school Krefeld is located quasi across from the Mercatorinsel. This is where the young painter was first accepted as an applicant for a spot at the school. After that, he worked in ateliers in Mönchengladbach, and of course also in Düsseldorf. With the imposing “Echo of Poseidon” at the junction of the Rhine and Ruhr, the former rector and now senator of the Düsseldorf Academy of the Arts is returning to his former place of work.
“The 300 year anniversary of the port calls for something special. With this sculpture, we want to give the city of Duisburg and the people on the Niederrhein a gift that is not just unique, but that also makes people think and inspires awe. Markus Lüpertz’ impressive bronze sculpture represents the pride of the local community and its ability to withstand all the challenges that come its way. The work is an unmistakable landmark on this river, which has such significance for Germany and Europe, ” says Erich Staake.
The unveiling of the new monument was attended by 200 arts enthusiasts from all over Germany, including North Rhine-Westphalia Minister of Transport Michael Groschek and Duisburg’s Lord Mayor Sören Link.