“Havel’s Place” Opened On Capuchin Terraces To Mark Former President’s Birthday

Brno becomes the 30th city in the world to host the unusual memorial to the late Czech President. The installation was opened by Brno Mayor Markéta Vaňková. Photo: KK / Brno Daily.

Brno, Oct 8 (BD) – The Václav Havel Bench is part of a series of commemorative places dedicated to Václav Havel. The unusual memorial, designed by the late Prague Castle architect and artist Bořek Šípek, consists of two armchairs connected by a round table, with a tree trunk growing in the center of the table. The first bench was installed at Georgetown University in Washington, and others can be found in Dublin, Barcelona, Prague, České Budějovice, Hradec Králové and Šumperk. Brno becomes the 30th city to get such a memorial.

The Brno version was masterminded by Havel’s friend Petr Oslzlý, who chose the location close to Divadlo Husa na Provázku, which was a favourite theatre of Havel’s and which organized a festival showcasing Havel’s work and the work of other taboo theatre writers in 1987. The unveiling took place on Saturday, which would have been Havel’s 83rd birthday, and the ribbon was cut by Brno Mayor Markéta Vaňková.

Photo: KK / Brno Daily.

Welcoming the memorial, Vaňková commented that the location on Capuchin Terraces would have suited Havel: “He was a leading dissident, politician, and president, so he was accustomed to having life around him. At the same time, as a poet, essayist, and world-class playwright, he needed a quiet corner to concentrate. Therefore, this space is a good representation of his personality. The area around Petrov already ranked high among Brno citizens’ favorite places in the city, and the new bench will perhaps support this.”

Havel’s motto “Truth and love must prevail over lies and hatred”. Photo: KK / Brno Daily.

The cost will be covered by the city, with a contribution from a fund set up for the public to  donate to the project.

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