Mother Motherland or the Motherland Calls or the Mamayev monument in Russia is a statue of a woman raising her sword to the sky commemorating the Battle of Stalingrad. The statue also serves as a symbol of the Soviet victory during World War II, in which the Red Army defeated the German troops. The statue’s name more literally translates to ‘the Motherland that gave birth to me is calling,’ referring to the allegorical Mother Russia.
At the time of construction, the monument was the tallest sculpture in the world, at 85 meters (279 feet) tall, weighing a hefty 8,000 tons. The sculptor, Yevgeny Vuchetich, used local model Valentina Izotova as the basis for the sculpture. Pre-stressed concrete with wire ropes was used in the construction of the monument.
The statue features a serious expression of a call by the mother to her sons to stand up and fight for the motherland. The strong hands, open-mouthed (as if calling) expression, and the statue’s appearance create a feeling of power. The statue looks the best in all the seasons. Surrounding the statue is the memorial complex which includes the tombstone of Marshal Vasily Chuikov.
The sculpture’s hasty construction and the site’s rising water levels have caused the statue to lean considerably over time, prompting concerns that it may collapse. The city is now working to restore it to its upright position.
- Yevgeny Vuchetich and Nikolai Nikitin designed the statue.
- The statue was unveiled on October 15, 1967.
- In 1967, the Mamayev Monument was designated as the largest statue in the world.
- The 200 steps to the base of the statue symbolize the 200 days that the battle of Stalingrad endured.
The Mother Motherland monument sits above Volgograd (Stalingrad) city, on a height called Mamayev Kurgan, marking the battleground of the fight that it commemorates. The city of Volograd, formerly called Stalingrad, is situated along the Volga River in Southern Russia. From Volgograd International Airport you can take a taxi to the statue.
May, September, and October are good months to visit Volgograd in terms of warmer, milder weather and less rainfall.
Nearby attractions: Panorama Museum, Volga River
Image Source : RIAN Archives