Princess Diana: rain of criticism on her tribute statue, the royal family forced to justify themselves

She was eagerly awaited. The death of Lady Diana in August 1997 was a real shock since the princess was much appreciated. In order to pay tribute to him, a statue of his effigy was unveiled this Thursday, July 1, on the occasion of what should have been his sixtieth birthday. The statue, unveiled by Princes Harry and William, was not unanimous. Commissioned by the sons of the princess in 2017, it was quickly the target of many criticisms by Internet users, who wondered the meaning of it. “Why is she holding three anonymous children instead of hugging her own sons?” Said one of them. In a statement, published by The Guardian, Kensington Palace wanted to provide more details. “The bronze statue represents the warmth, elegance and generosity of Princess Diana”, we can first read. Subsequently, it was Ian Rank-Broadley, the author of this work, who spoke in turn. “The objective of the statue is to maintain her memory. It is a symbol of the impact that Lady Diana has had through the generations,” he says. What about the three children by his side? They “refer to the humanitarian work of the Princess of Wales”, the statement concludes.

A highly anticipated event. For several months, the British had been impatient to discover the work of Ian Rank-Broadley but also the chosen location. This one is loaded with meaning since the statue is located in Sunken Garden, in the gardens of Kensington Palace. An initiative of princes Harry and William, who are aware of the love their mother had for this place. In addition, it is the official residence of Prince William, his wife Kate Middleton and their three children, Princes George and Louis and Princess Charlotte. It is also the place that Prince Harry had chosen to present his future wife, Meghan Markle, to the press, in November 2017. Both had also announced their engagement. In order to leave no details aside, a text with a very particular symbol has been written on the base of this work. It is an excerpt from a poem from The Measure of a Man, which evokes the greatness of the woman. This is important since it was read during the mass in honor of Lady Diana, organized in 2007 on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of her disappearance.

Statue of Lady Diana: how was the artist chosen for this work?

If the statue has caused a lot of talk, Ian Rank-Broadley who is at the origin of it is not unknown to the royal family. He was chosen by a committee of eight, including the Princess’s sons as well as Diana’s sister, Lady Sarah McCorquodale. Moreover, it is to him that we owe the face of the queen who adorns the coins across the Channel since 1998. He also signed the coins celebrating the centenary of the queen mother, the silver jubilees. and gold of Elizabeth II but also another series bearing the effigy of Prince Charles. Thus, those who wish will be able to come and see this work from this Friday, July 2.

Lady Diana © Backgrid UK

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