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A stake instead of a monument to Ivan the Terrible in Cheboksary

Photo by the “Spring” movement
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Activists of the “Spring” movement in Chuvashia brought to Cheboksary officials their version of the monument to Ivan the Terrible in the form of a stake. They are confident that the authorities manipulated the wording of a survey of citizens about the need for a monument. Activists wrote about this in their group on the social network VKontakte.

According to the activists of "Spring", a survey for Cheboksar residents was formulated incorrectly. The authorities offered three answers to citizens: the installation of a monument is “a great idea, the more monuments there are, the more interesting places there are in the city”; “There are enough sculptures in Cheboksary” and “this [the question of the installation of the monument to Ivan the Terrible] must be decided by experts”.

“Of course, everyone can perceive the tsar in his own way. However, the monument is erected not by the patron or local historical community. We pay for it with our taxes. We do not agree to give our money for the erection of such a monument. Therefore, we offer our solution and give our own version of the sculpture of the city administration. We think that our version of the monument to Ivan the Terrible — a wooden stake — perpetuates the name of the bloody tyrant accurately and with less cost,” activists wrote.

Semyon Kochkin, the federal coordinator of the movement and the head of the Cheboksary headquarters of Alexey Navalny, found a tender on the “Execution of works on the arrangement of the territory for a monument”, which was announced in September 2018, on the public procurement website. Voting on the need to install the monument was launched later – November 30, 2018.

Cheboksary journalist Alexey Radchenko in his blog called the initiative with a monument a distraction:

“This is an attempt to create distracting discussions. So that people are less likely to discuss failures in the economy, rising prices and raising the retirement age, and quarrelling among themselves about the names of airports or because of this monument, forcing people fight each other,” Radchenko wrote in his Telegram channel.

The art object in the form of a stake was used by Kirov activists on the birthday of Joseph Stalin on December 18, 2018.

In Voronezh in 2016, at a picket in support of political prisoners, they also used a similar construction.

For the first time, a stake was called “the unofficial monument to Ivan the Terrible” in 2016 in Kansk. It was installed by a local artist Vladislav Gultyaev.

The initiators of the construction of the monument to Ivan the Terrible called him one of the founders of the city, but the settlement on the site of the capital of Chuvashia existed long before the Russian authorities built the Kremlin in the Chuvash settlement of Shupashkar. The date of foundation of the city is 1469.

Daniil Kuznetsov, «7x7»


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