LONDON | The statue of a female protester of the movement Black Lives Matter, which has come to replace that of a merchant of slaves at Bristol, was removed Thursday at dawn, about 24 hours after its installation, according to the municipality.
Called A surge (A Surge of Power), the sculpture by Marc Quinn had been installed on the pedestal where stood the statue of Edward Colston by the teams from the artist, without the city of Bristol being aware of it.
According to the municipality, the statue has been withdrawn at his request, stating that she would be placed in the museum so that its author can retrieve it or give the collection to the city.
Reacting Wednesday to the installation of the work, the mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees had said on Twitter understand that people want to “express themselves”, but that the statue installed “without authorization” should be removed.
The large piece of black steel represents Jen Reid, a woman protester who had been photographed in the raised fist on the base vacuum of the old statue of Edward Colston, a merchant of slaves from the late Seventeenth century.
This sculpture, which was controversial for years, had been déboulonnée and then thrown in the river in early June, during events of the movement Black Lives Matter ” after the death at the end of may of George Floyd, a black American killed by a police officer.
These events were accompanied by a series of degradations of statues of famous personalities, challenged because of their involvement in the slave trade or racial statements. The fate of the statue of Edward Colston, rescued from, had not been fixed.
Edward Colston was enriched in the slave trade. It would have sold 100,000 slaves in West Africa, the Caribbean and the Americas between 1672 and 1689, before using his fortune to finance the development of Bristol, which has long earned a reputation as a philanthropist.