Ionică, Lucian. Revolution of 1989 - Living statue, Timișoara, December 1989. Photo
Among the very few images that were taken from a high position, Lucian Ionică draws attention to those taken in a central place for the revolutionary events of Timişoara in December 1989: the former Opera Square, now Victory Square. He mentions that he never really felt any serious threat when he tried to take photographs, and that, on the contrary, he experienced a moment of great good fortune and generosity precisely on the occasion of taking these photographs from above. “In my case, the fear I had had that I might encounter hostile reactions proved unfounded. No one bothered me, no one prevented me from taking photographs. On the contrary, for one of the photographs I was even the beneficiary of a combination of favourable circumstances: in Victory Square, to capture that crowd, I couldn’t photograph from ground level. I had to go upstairs in a building. And I went upstairs in the building situated diagonally opposite the Opera Theatre, where at the time there was a milk-bar – now it’s McDonalds – and on its façade, high up, you can still see the marks of bullets from the Revolution. Quite simply, I just knocked on a door, and the gentleman agreed to let me onto his balcony. And from there I took photographs – one of which is among the best known photographs of Opera/Victory Square during the Revolution. I took a few pictures from there.”
Among these photographs mentioned by Lucian Ionică, one in particular, even after such a long time, has a very powerful significance for him: “From the balcony I took a number of photographs, among them one that I would like to see turned into a monument. Of course there would have to be an artist, a sculptor who wanted to do this. There was, and I think there still is an electrical installation there. It’s an installation enclosed in a box, like a 70cm x 70cm square about 2 metres long. Well, on the surface of that there were five people, like a living statue. The image is very powerful, both visually and symbolically. As if people were standing on a pedestal, ordinary people on a pedestal. If a sculpture in realistic style were made from that photograph, it would show, in my opinion, that desire of people both to see and to participate in what was happening there."
- Source: Lucian Ionică Photo Collection
- Petrescu, Cristina
- Pătrăşconiu, Cristian Valeriu
Ionică, Lucian, interview by Pătrăşconiu, Cristian Valeriu , May 03, 2018. COURAGE Registry Oral History Collection