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Talkback: Voice your opinion on today’s Czech news

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Welcome to Talkback, a forum to voice your opinion on today’s Czech news.

This week’s topic:Should Hungarian salami be removed from map of Europe?

We will sweeten it up for Europe, the Czech EU presidency motto says. The authors of the motto had no idea just how sweet the presidency could be from the very start. Last week, the Czechs unveiled a piece of art at the European Council seat to mark the six-month presidency. The Entropa mosaic shaped as a map of Europe was supposed to be the work of 27 artists from all the EU member states. But soon it was revealed that the caricatures of EU countries were created by artist David Černý and several of his friends.

The mosaic shows for example Romania as a Dracula themepark, Sweden as an Ikea box with the Gripen fighters, or the Netherlands flooded by water with only minarets peeking through the waves.

Černý, who is a well known provocateur, said he knew truth would come out but he wanted to find out if Europe was able to laugh at itself. Not everybody is laughing. While some find it interesting and funny, others are shocked and demand an apology or want their piece of the giant puzzle to be removed. The piece which displays Turkish toilets on the section representing Bulgaria might therefore soon be taken down.

Some critics of Entropa described it as a shame for the Czech EU presidency, which can no longer be considered a trustworthy instutition. Supporters have praised Černý’s sense of humour. Alexandr Vondra, Czech minister without portfolio in charge of EU affairs, and EU Ambassador Milena Vicenová, said the sculpture could help remove prejudice as it depicts stereotypes that prevent integration and cooperation in Europe.

  • Do you think Entropa is a suitable piece of art for the European Council? Do you believe it could help fight prejudice?
  • Are you a fan of Černý’s work? Do you like the Czech sense of humour?
  • Do you think Denmark’s legoland depicts the cartoons of Prophet Mohammed? Should it be removed?

    Email us at: [email protected].

    Related links

  • Artist says duped Czech govt over EU mosaic
  • Czech experts praise Černý’s provocative EU sculpture
  • Černý: I thought someone would find out sooner

    It has been 40 years since university student Jan Palach took his life in protest against the resignation the nation had accepted after the 1968 invasion. In relation to the anniversary, Monitor reader Jeff Parker sent a note: “I plan to celebrate my birthday with Jan Palach.
    I was born just 2-3 hours before Jan Palach burned himself on 16 January 1969. I am American working in Prague for almost 3 years. Sharing his day (and his initials, too) is special to me.”

    Talkback: Voice your opinion on today's Czech news image 31Kateřina Heilmann
    is a staff writer and translator at the Monitor. She
    likes writing about cycling and culture.
    You can reach her at [email protected]

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