Happy 2019 And Long Live Freedom of Information

The other day, I found a map describing the state of the freedom of Information, put together by Reporters Without Borders. I haven’t yet been able to suppress the picture from my mind and I thought that my last post for 2018 would have to be dedicated to freedom of information and freedom in general.

Les Arts & Métiers (CNAM)
Les Arts & Métiers - a museum dedicated to Science, technology and the manufacturing industry
Les Arts & Métiers – a museum dedicated to Science, technology and the manufacturing industry

A couple of weeks ago, we visited the Arts & Métiers Museum in Paris, and we came across a few copies of the Statue of Liberty which was built in the City and offered to the people of America 133 years ago.

Bartholdi’s Statue of Liberty in the Caster Gayet workshop rue de Chazelles in the 17th district of Paris – Picture by Victor Dargaud in 1884

Building the Statue wasn’t a piece of cake. The congress had agreed and paid for the inauguration, the French part of the financing was catered for but the US subscription for the installation was private and money was missing. Joseph Pulitzer made it a matter of national pride and managed to raise enough funds for the statue to be finished and shipped to the US. Phew!

Freedom of information
L’île aux cygnes – December 2017

A small version of the statue is still welcoming visitors from the South West on their way to the City. This replica was installed in 1889 (3 years after the NYC statue was inaugurated). It was offered by the French residents in the United States and is a Bronze cast of a plaster version designed by Bartholdi himself.

Another copy of this statue has now been made available at the entrance of the museum since 2010
It is based on this 1907 copy made of Plaster and iron inside the museum. The yellow version is from 2018 and is not considered genuine.
And 133 years later, this is what we get for our money’s worth.
Uriah Heep – Sweet Freedom – 1973

Happy New Year.

Yann Gourvennec
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