Ville Vallgren: Topelius ja lapset, 1932© Kuva: HAM

Topelius and Children

Ville Vallgren

Author Zachris Topelius (1818-1898) has two commemorative statues in Helsinki. There are two because the memorial project for the author turned into a grand disagreement at the time. The statue meant for the Esplanadi boulevard, entitled Fact and Fable, sounded too metaphorical to many ears, provoking a competing sculpture of more lifelike realism. Placed in the central Kaartinkaupunki neighbourhood, Topelius and Children was inaugurated in the spring of 1909, half a year before the unveiling of Fact and Fable.

What is your take on the competing styles? Is there accounting for taste?