Usain Bolt and a tale of three statues
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Friday November 16, 2012 – Three statues, each distinctly different, have been unveiled this year in Europe depicting and honouring the world’s fastest man, Jamaican sprint sensation Usain Bolt.
Only one of the three has direct Jamaican connections and was created by German musician Vita Diedel Kloever who has visited the island on several occasions and is married to a Jamaican.
The dreadlocked musician’s life-size statue, which he named “Bolt of Bolts”, is crafted entirely of bolts and scrap metal.
Kloever, 51, told Chromatic magazine that he was blown away by the exploits of the “superstar sprinter” and thought this was a great way to show his respect.
"Bolt is a sprint extraordinaire, one of the greatest that the world has ever seen. I am proud of having links with Jamaica," he said.
The artist was inspired to create the statue in 2009, the year Bolt won the World Championship sprint double in Berlin, Germany. It nevertheless took until last year to gather enough material for the formidable undertaking.
Kloever finally got to work on the image in March, going on to complete the unique depiction of Bolt in four months.
"My greatest desire is that this statue of Usain Bolt be at its rightful place and that is in Jamaica. As an artist, this would be a great honour for me," he said.
Kloever was born in Germany in 1961. After high school, he developed an interest in visual and performing arts and later became bass player for German reggae group Herbman Band.
"I began travelling to Jamaica in order to increase my knowledge about the culture and music. In 1985, I met my wife Sista Gracy in Jamaica, who is also my music partner today," he said.
Kloever was the only artist to create a likeness of Bolt at modest cost.
In July, the Birmingham City Council in England unveiled a wicker statue of Bolt costing £15,000. Furthermore, it was, as the Brits say, “a right cock-up”. The statue portrayed the legendary sprinter in his signature “To De World” pose – but pointing the wrong way.
Days before the start of the London Olympics, another statue of the Jamaican star was unveiled at Madame Tussauds in London. The waxwork, believed to have cost £150,000 to make, took a team of 12 people four months to cast. Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)