On Sunday 3 November, a monument of one of the world’s most important authors, Fjodor Dostojevskij (1821-1881), was unveiled at the historical Assistens Cemeteries outside the City of Copenhagens´s Nørreport. But why was a Dostojevskij monument unveiled in Copenhagen?
Actor Viktor Melnikov has since 2013 provided a sparklingly sharp insight into Dostoevsky’s writing, a unique acting performance with the dissemination of the authorship on stage, which has been performed in the small Chapel there. He created an authenticity and intensity on the stage room, entirely in the Dostojevskij’s spirit. Dostojevskij’s writing allows us to look into the secret corners of our fellow human beings.
The Dostojevskij monument in Copenhagen
The unveiling ceremony consisted of live music, pantomime art and speeches by, among others, cultural adviser Christoffer Jørgensen, Dostoevsky experts and the Russian ambassador to Denmark, Vladimir Barbin. The young Russian artist Andrey Tartishnikov was present, saying that his biggest problem when he created the sculpture was when he should make the eyes. He said, he chose to leave two black holes in his face which symbolized how Dostoevsky was able to see the depth and contradictions of his heroes.
The monument is given in appreciation of the Dostoevsky theater trilogy, The Dream of a Rediculous Man, Krotkaja and The Little Orphan.
Fjordor Dostojevskij, Hans Christian Andersen and Søren Kierkegaard
Hans Christian Andersen (1805 – 1875) used Assistens cemetery as a place where he could be inspired, and where he could – in his mind – bury persons on whom he was annoyed. In Greek mythology we find the nucleus of the double motif in the myth of Narcissus. Dostojevskij as well as Andersen was engaged in this theme. Dostojevskij wrote his novella The Double in 1846 and Andersen his fairy tale The Shadow in 1847.
Related: Hans Christian Andersen’s Denmark
The Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard introduced existentialism in the 19th century. The philosophical movement was followed by philosophers such as Nietzsche and Heidegger and authors like Camus and Dostojevskij. Both H. C. Andersen and Søren Kierkegaard are buried at Assistens Cemetery in Copenhagen. Dostojevskij visited the cemetery in 1865.
So, the Dostojevskij monument can now be appreciated by all visitors to the Assistens Cemetery in Copenhagen.
Feature image (on top): Official poster
All photos by Tor Kjolberg, except unless stated otherwise.
Dostojevskij Monument Unveiled in Copenhagen, written by Tor Kjolberg