Utøya memorial to Breivik victims shot down by Community
Around 800 people have expressed their rejection of the proposed memorial to be built in Sørbråten, Norway called ‘Memory Wound’ by Swedish artist Jonas Wahlberg.
The winning design would see a section of the Sørbråten peninsular near Utøya carved off, creating a three-and-a-half-metre slice on the earth. One side of the exposed land will have a list of names of the victims of far-right extremist Anders Breivik, who went on a mass shooting in 2011 at the nearby camp Worker’s Youth League (AUF) in Utøya .
In a Facebook page entitled ‘Nei til vedtatte minnesmerke på Sørbråtan i Hole,’ which already has more than 800 members, locals called the memorial a ‘rape of nature’ and a ‘hideous monument.’ Page creator Ole Morten Jensen said the memorial will serve to remind the locals of the gruesome attacks every day.
Families of the victims are also not entirely happy with the proposal. Vanessa Svebakk, mother of 14-year-old victim Sharidyn, said she doesn’t like to see her daughter’s name included in the memorial.
‘No one should be allowed to make money on our daughter’s death, and we would rather not have her name on a memorial,’ she said.
Svebakk said the memorial was also ‘undemocratic’ since she wasn’t asked for permission by the organisers to use her daughter’s name. Koro head Svein Bjørkås said it was the first time he had heard anyone from the victims’ family object to the memorial. Koro is in charge of commissioned public art in Norway.
Bjørkås however revealed that the organisation did not contact any of the 77 victims’ family for permission and instead got their information through the AUF. He added that they will consider their next move in light of this new problem.