On 22 August members of the museum staff visited the sculptor Kristaps Gulbis to see the monument which will be erected at the end of September in Zedelgem, in Belgium. The monument represents the idea of freedom and is dedicated to the Latvian legionnaires, who, after the Second World War, were in imprisoned in Zedelgem, by the British, as prisoners of war.
The monument takes the shape of a Latvian beehive. The monument's designer and sculptor, Kristaps Gulbis, created the similarity between the beehive and people: “In Zedelgem camp there were around 12,000 Latvian soldiers. This is equivalent to the number of bees in a hive. My idea is to unite in this monument the common European values and symbolic language understood by all Europeans with something special and visually characteristic only to Latvia. The Latvian bee colony in Belgium. The bee colony is a nation. The hive is their state with its own army, law and order. Bees are peaceful. They do not attack of their own accord. They sting only when they feel threatened. They defend, fight and die for their hive, colony and freedom”.
The monument will cost 100,000 EUR, half from Zedelgem town municipality and half from the Museum of the Occupation of Latvia. For more than a year the museum has been gathering donations to build the monument. Of the 50,000 EUR, so far 38,188EUR has been collected. We invite you to also become a donor for the monument! Anyone who gives 100EUR, or the equivalent in another currency, will receive a bronze gilded bee pin.