Budapest 2018 part II - funny statues, charming statues, historical statues


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Europe » Hungary » Central Hungary » Budapest
June 13th 2018
Published: August 15th 2018
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Fooling around with a statueFooling around with a statueFooling around with a statue

Well, this statue is asking for this treatment, isn't it?

Statues seem to be the thing in Budapest





When we spot something that we think sticks out or is special in a place we occasionally dedicate an entire blog to this. We think of these as theme blogs. This selection of "theme" is made in a totally non-scientific way. It's only what we personally find interesting and what pops up in our minds when we try to absorb everything at once. Examples of these "theme blogs" are

Bulgaria - monuments

Kotor, Montenegro - balconies

Sur, Oman - doors

Cuba - Yank Tanks

Rome, Italy - fountains



In Budapest we noticed that there are many statues. Statues aren't by any means unique for Budapest because in most large cities there are statues. What makes the statues in Budapest special is that many of them are either bit funny, depict people you don't expect to find a statue of in Hungary or is historically very interesting.



Funny statues

One of the two statues we think of as "Funny statues" depicts an overweight policeman. It is said that if you rub his tummy it brings good luck.



People we didn't expect to find a statue of in Hungary

In
Overweight policemanOverweight policemanOverweight policeman

One of the two statues which we have labelled "Funny statues" depicts an overweight policeman. It is said that if you rub his tummy it brings good luck
Budapest we found three statues in the category "people we don't expect to find a statue of in Hungary". These three are:

Peter Falk - American actor best known for his role as Detective Columbo. This statue can be found on Falk Miksa Utca which translates as Michael Falk Street. The actor's complete name was Peter Michael Falk. In the US he was known as "Peter Falk" but in Hungary it seems they prefer calling him "Michael Falk".

Bud Spencer - Italian actor whose real name was Carlo Pedersoli. He is famous for the movies he made together with Terence Hill.

Ronald Reagan - President of the United States from 1981 to 1989.



Traditional statues

Liberty statue - stands on top of Gellert Hill from which the views over the city are astonishing.

Raoul Wallenberg statue - raised to the memory of Raoul Wallenberg, Swedish diplomat who during the German occupation saved thousands of Jews from being deported to concentration camps.



Controversial statue

Strictly this is better described as a monument than as a statue. It is called memorial to the Victims of the German Invasion, and the controversy
Peter Falk Peter Falk Peter Falk

Peter Falk is an American actor best known for his role as Detective Columbo
lies in the symbolism used. It can be argued that the monument blames only Nazi Germany for the atrocities played out during the occupation whereas in fact many Hungarians actively took part in killing and/or deporting the Hungarian Jews.



Memento Park

In 1989 the communists lost their power in Hungary and the country became a democracy. The communists left behind many monuments honouring communist leaders or the communist idea. They wanted to remove these monuments since they reminded the Hungarians of the hated totalitarian regime. The same thing happened all over the Eastern Europe and in most cases the statues ended up in the city dump. In Budapest they did things slightly differently. They dismantled the monuments and reerected them in the outskirts of town thus creating an open air museum.



Soviet heroic memorial

Again something which is better described as a monument than as a statue. We add it anyway because we want to point out that it is an oddity. It is a Communist era monument which still stands in its original place in central Budapest. It was neither destroyed not moved to Memento Park in 1989.



Of course these are not
Carlo Pedersoli/Bud SpencerCarlo Pedersoli/Bud SpencerCarlo Pedersoli/Bud Spencer

Italian actor better known under the name Bud Spencer. He is famous for the movies he made together with Terence Hill.
all the statues you can find in Budapest, it is only a small sample. Tripadvisor lists over 300 statues and monuments and not even that is a complete list. It could be interesting to hunt down some of these but trying to find them all is not something we recommend anyone to do.


Additional photos below
Photos: 26, Displayed: 24


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Ronald Reagan Ronald Reagan
Ronald Reagan

President of the United States from 1981 to 1989
Liberty statue Liberty statue
Liberty statue

Liberty statue stands on top of Gellert Hill from which the views over the city are astonishing. When Communism fell in Hungary this statue was remodeled. The removed sections were reerected in Memento Park. For a while they considered removing even the main statue. But it was eventually considered not to be associated with the old regime they wanted to rid themselves of
Equestrian statueEquestrian statue
Equestrian statue

Traditional statue.
Raoul Wallenberg statue Raoul Wallenberg statue
Raoul Wallenberg statue

This statue was raised to the memory of Raoul Wallenberg, Swedish diplomat who during the German occupation saved thousands of Jews from being deported to concentration camps.
Victims of the German InvasionVictims of the German Invasion
Victims of the German Invasion

This monument is controversial and the controversy lies in the symbolism used. It can be argued that the monument blames only Nazi Germany for the atrocities played out during the occupation whereas in fact many Hungarians actively took part in killing and/or deporting the Hungarian Jews.
Part of Liberty StatuePart of Liberty Statue
Part of Liberty Statue

This statue once stood on Gellert Hill next to the Liberty Statue. Now it has been relocated to Memento Park
Hungarian-Soviet Friendship Memorial Hungarian-Soviet Friendship Memorial
Hungarian-Soviet Friendship Memorial

Part of what used to be the Hungarian-Soviet Friendship Memorial.
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

In 1989 the communists lost their power in Hungary. The communists then left behind many monuments. These monuments reminded the Hungarians of the hated regime they had just gotten rid of they wanted to rid themselves of the monuments and the statues. They were moved to Memento Park
Lenin plaqueLenin plaque
Lenin plaque

Lenin plaque at Memento Park
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

All over the Eastern Europe the Communist statues were pulled down and removed. In most cases the statues ended up in the city dump. In Budapest they did things slightly differently. They creating an open air museum outside the city and moved them there
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

Most of the sculptures in Memento Park honours Communist leaders and/or Communist ideals
Lenin statueLenin statue
Lenin statue

Lenin statue at Memento Park
The Republic of Councils MonumentThe Republic of Councils Monument
The Republic of Councils Monument

One of the most eye catching statues in Memento Park
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

This might be created in a style known as Cubism
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

One of the most eye catching statues in Memento Park
Communist starCommunist star
Communist star

A Communist star made from flowers in Memento Park
LeninLenin
Lenin

Lenin statue at Memento Park
Memento ParkMemento Park
Memento Park

Jonna's response to the art at Memento Park was "It's not beautiful". Well, she has a point there doesn't she?
Karl Marx and Friedrich EngelsKarl Marx and Friedrich Engels
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

Statues depicting Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels at Memento Park
Soviet heroic memorialSoviet heroic memorial
Soviet heroic memorial

Monument from Communist era which still is in its original place in Budapest


16th August 2018

Columbo
I read about this statue before we travelled there... and if I'd known Fang was also included, I would have definitely visited it! The blog I read suggested that Peter Falk was a descendant of Miksa Falk (the Hungarian politician), hence the statue on that street. Not sure how true that is though :)
16th August 2018

That would explain things a bit
If Miksa Falk is a Hungarian politician it would explain things a bit. Thanks for letting us know about that. /Ake
16th August 2018
Memento Park

Agree! I found the whole park impressive.
16th August 2018
Memento Park

I find it interesting for many reasons
I find Memento Park interesting for many reasons but mostly for the historical implications. Communism has been transferred to a museum. I like that! /Ake
16th August 2018

Memento Park was impressive.
16th August 2018
Memento Park

We also visited a memorial in Prague. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memorial_to_the_Victims_of_Communism
16th August 2018
Memento Park

I'll try to see that when I visit Prague
I still haven't been to Prague but it is high on the Most Wanted List. I'll try to remember to look for that memorial when I go there. Thanks for telling us about it. /Ake

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