Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Atomium - Brussels

The Atomium was the main pavilion and icon of the World Fair of Brussels (1958), commonly called Expo 58. It symbolised the democratic will to maintain peace among all the nations, faith in progress, both technical and scientific and, finally, an optimistic vision of the future of a modern, new, super-technological world for a better life for mankind. 

Saturday, 11 January 2014


Beyond Vaihu, on the road of the south coast leading to Rano Raraku, the pavement goes along a set of amazing statues, which are essential to visit. In fact, two ahu go around a small bay. The first, the Ura Uranga Te Mahina ahu, has five fallen statues. On the other side of the bay, the Akahanga ahu is composed by at least 16 statues, possibly from different periods. Some lay fallen by the sea. Near this, it is possible to observe what used to be an islander town: natural caverns, foundations of shiphouses, etc. Approximately 100 meters away from the great ahu lay the remains of a much more rustic ahu that does not have any statues. This means that the construction can only be subsequent to the great ahu (otherwise, the stones would have been used for the foundations of the main building.) This small rudimentary ahu shows that after the statues of the ancestors were demolished, the islanders who fought for the island maintained worship practices that were very similar to the previous ones. They used smaller statues such as the half-built ones on the top part of the Rano Raraku, and more rustic ahu, which are testimonies of a time of decadence. Almost in the center of the bay, there is a big statue laying face down. It is in perfect state and dates from the period of splendor of the Rano Raraku quarry. The design is exceptional; though the statue could not reach its destination (the eyes are not open). According to oral tradition, it wasn’t destined to seat at the Akahanga ahu, but in the minute construction where it rests. Some people believe that this mound of stones harbors the tomb of Hotu Motu’a; others believe it is located on the other side of the island, near the Ura Uranga Te Mahina ahu.