Europe

Copenhagen’s Little Mermaid finds herself in the middle of a dispute

The world-famous “The Little Mermaid’ sculpture in the Danish capital Copenhagen, has been watching the harbour serenely for over a century. However, a more recent artwork elsewhere in the country has caused a bit of tension.

A newer mermaid statute in Asaa Havn first showed its face in 2016, but its days might be coming to an end.

Heirs to the rights of The Little Mermaid in Copenhagen believe that the “rival” shares too many similarities with the original and therefore it must be plagiarism. They say “it looks too much like the original in Copenhagen” and demand the new statue be dismantled and destroyed.

Locals and visitors think the two are not alike. “I don’t think that she looks like the one in Copenhagen. There is a big difference. The one in Copenhagen is all smooth, this one is rougher.” says a man walking past the sculpture.

Another by-passer adds, “It’s sitting in the same way. On the rock, with the tail out. I don’t think it resembles the one in Copenhagen, there are big differences. The one in Copenhagen is smooth, this one is rough.”

The sculptor Palle Mork, who created the mermaid in Asaa Havn, defended his work, saying it’s much larger and made of a different material. But the protectors of Edvard Eriksen’s iconic 1913 statue waging a battle for years to protect the artwork’s image and usage rights.

The two mermaids themselves are maintaining a stony silence.

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