On November 28 a statue was unveiled to celebrated poet Osip Mandelshtam. The sculpted bronze bust placed on what looks like to be a revolving column of cubes, each engraved with lines from his verse. The sculpture is the result of the creative work of three people: sculptors Dmitry Shakhovsky, Elena Munts and architect Alexander Brodsky. The statue stands on a pulpit-like platform overlooking Kitai Gorod, on Starosadsky Pereulok, a street which the poet regularly visited when he stayed with his brother in a block of flats nearby in the 20s and 30s. The Moscow City Authorities are reported to have spent 11.5 million rubles landscaping the site.
Osip Mandelshtam was born in Poland into a Jewish family, and is now regarded alongside Boris Pastenak and Anna Akhmatova as one of the greatest voices of 20th-century Russian poetry. He caught the public eye in the lead-up to the 1917 revolution, when he co-wrote the manifesto of the Acmeist poets and published an acclaimed poem called ‘Stone’ in 1913. He soon fell out of grace with Stalin, aft er writing an acidic criticism of the Soviet leader following his experiences of the 1930s famine. He was exiled in Voronezh where he continued writing, and eventually died in a Gulag transit camp near Vladivostok in 1938. His named was cleared in 1987.