WILDE AND VILDE SCULPTURES
The sculpture group depicting Oscar Wilde and Eduard Vilde consists of the statues of the two writers sitting alongside one another on a granite bench. The sculpture was first unveiled in 30.05.1999. The monument, which serves as a humorous quip on literary history (designed by T. Kirsipuu in 1999) is located in front of the Eduard Vilde saloon and café. The English author and playwright of Irish descent Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) was indeed a contemporary of the Estonian novelist Eduard Vilde (1865–1933) with the two bronze companions now amicably sharing a bench.
The author of the piece, sculptor Tiiu Kirsipuu (who modelled the statues based on photos of Wilde and Vilde) has noted that she was thinking of the year 1890 when composing the work, since it was a moment in time that lent itself to the possibility of the two authors actually meeting up to share some witticisms.
Wilde and Vilde in Galway, Ireland
In 24.04.2004 a copy of Tiiu Kirsipuu’s statue was unveiled in the Irish town of Galway. The copy of the statue was presented as a gift to Ireland and Galway on behalf of Estonia and the town of Tartu to celebrate Estonia becoming a member of the European Union. The statue was presented by the mayor of Galway Terry O’Flaherty together with the Estonian minister of culture Urmas Paet and head of the Tartu town council Aadu Must. In 2001 the original statue made such a profound impression on the president of Ireland Mary McAleese visiting Estonia at the time that a miniature copy of the statue was presented to her as an official gift. At the same period the first ideas of presenting Ireland with a carbon-copy of the statue started gathering momentum.