Miri Regev statue appears in Tel Aviv

3.5-meter statue of Culture Minister placed in Tel Aviv standing before mirror with inscription 'In the heart of the nation'.

Mordechai Sones ,

Statue of Miri Regev
Statue of Miri Regev
Kobi Richter/TPS

A 3.5-meter statue of Culture Minister Miri Regev was placed this morning in Tel Aviv's Habima Square. The Minister is depicted standing before a mirror and next to her is the inscription "In the heart of the nation".

The background to the matter is apparently Minister Miri Regev's decision to promote the Cultural Loyalty Law.

Culture Minister Regev responded, "Thank you, Itai Zalait, for placing a mirror in the 'heart of the nation' on Habimah Square. In the past three years, I've done a great deal to place a mirror before the Israeli cultural world. A mirror that exposed exclusion of whole populations and 'patronage' of those who had thought themselves to be 'the heart of the nation'.

"Well, the people, in all its parts, is my mirror. The principles of cultural justice are what stand before my eyes in the face of the Cinderella legend and the immortal statement: 'Mirror, mirror on the wall, what are the ugliest injustices of all?'," added the Culture Minister.

Regev at Western Wall
Flash 90

The proposed law allows for elimination or reduction of budgets from cultural institutions according to a series of criteria, including ideological defeatism and state subversion. The bill was approved this week in the Knesset's first reading after being approved by the ministerial committee on legislation.

Two years ago, a golden statue of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was placed in Rabin Square. Then the artist behind the work, also Itai Zeliat, said placing the statue was only the beginning of a series of artistic actions.

"The goal is to examine the limits of freedom of expression in Israel 2016 - what happens when I put such a statue, does it bring sanctions, such as arrest, or will they just remove it?" The statue was knocked down shortly before being removed by the municipality.

Last year, a golden statue of then Supreme Court Chief Justice Miriam Naor was placed next to the court.