Vilnius selects best concept for monument to national revival leader Basanavičius
Vilnius' local authority has selected the best concept for a monument to Jonas Basanavičius, one of the most prominent pioneers of the Lithuanian national revival movement of the late 19th century, that is planned to be erected in the capital's Old Town.
The winning design concept, developed by sculptors Gediminas Antanas Šakalis, Gediminas Piekuras and Algirdas Rasimavičius, features a bronze statue of Basanavičius standing on a cube-shaped granite pedestal.
Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius says that the city will make a final decision next week on whether to erect a monument based on the winning entry using private funds.
The mayor does not approve of announcing a new contest, but he does not rule that it might be done.
"In think we will have to look for possibilities to turn the first-place winning concept into reality," he told reporters on Monday.
The monument is to be erected on the square in front of the Lithuanian National Philharmonic Society building, where the Great Seimas of Vilnius in 1905 raised the issue of political autonomy for Lithuania.
Basanavičius was an initiator of the assembly. On Feb. 16, 1918, he chaired the Council of Lithuania which declared Lithuania an independent state.
Active discussions about immortalizing the memory of Basanavičius in Vilnius have been ongoing since late 2014.