(c) Maria Trabulo 2017. Photographer: Peter Kainz

Set In Stone

Maria Trabulo

The King’s statue stood on the façade of Rossio’s train station in Lisbon for almost 126 years until the 3rd of May 2016 when a tourist tried to climb it to take a selfie and accidentally knocked it down. Sebastian was the 16th King of Portugal, he reigned from 1577 till he died in combat during the battle of Alcácer-Quibir in Marocco 1578. Having left no descent his death originated a crisis of succession in Portugal that ended up in the country’s loss of sovereignity. In the days after the 2016 incident the media and social networks were flooded with comments and reports on the issue. Suddenly, it was as if the King had died again and no one knew the whereabouts of his body. While professional restorers analyzed the possibility to retrieve the statue piece by piece, a group of historians, museum directors, and public assets managers hurried to try to fill the empty space left by the toppled statue. We seem to have achieved the ability to retain, store and keep all data, but perhaps the survival of memory exceeds the need for three dimensional representations of people or things,the need of a body.


Diploma Exhibition
Brucknerstrasse 6, 1040 Wien,
16-22 June 2017

Diploma Commission
Sen.Lect. Dr. Bernd Kräftner
Univ.-Ass. Mag.rer.nat. Dr.techn. Boris Odehnal
Univ.-Prof. Mag. art. Ruth Schnell
VAss. Mag. art. Nita Tandon
Prof. Virgil Widrich

Fact Box

Set In Stone
June 16, 2017