Qian Shaowu, a noted Chinese sculptor, has called for laws and regulations on the building of statues in public places, in a bid to maintain order and a healthy development of the fledgling sculpture market in China.
Qian told Xinhua that he is luckier than the older generation sculptors in China. When sculpture was first introduced into the country from Europe in the early 1900s, few people would pay for a statue.
Things have changed a lot now, he said, noting that a large number of statues have been erected in Chinese cities since the launching of the reform and opening-up drive in the late 1970s. "People are willing to pay for statues," he said.
However, many statues are of poor quality and could not be seen as artistic works. "They are a kind of rubbish in cities," he said.
He proposed that laws and regulations be made for this field. For example, each of housing projects in cities should leave one or two percent of the cost as the cost of building public statues.
Meanwhile, he suggested, a statue has to stand there for a number of years for the judgment of professional critics or ordinary.
(Xinhua News Agency May 18, 2004)