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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Copenhagen's Little Mermaid arrives in China

The Little Mermaid, star of the 1989 Disney movie and subject of the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen on which it was based, is now a world traveler. Her statue by Edvard Eriksen has remained in Langelinie pier for nearly a century--since 1913--despite two beheadings and having her arm cut off, and is Denmark's most popular tourist attraction.

Following a Danish and Chinese ceremony at Langelinie March 25 in which the Minister for Economic and Business Affairs, Brian Mikkelsen, and the Lord Mayor of Copenhagen, Frank Jensen, wished her a bon voyage, the Little Mermaid embarked on her journey.

According to Brian Mikkelsen, Minister for Economic and Business Affairs, "We participate in EXPO 2010 to brand Denmark and Danish values to the Chinese and all visitors from around the world who visit the Danish Pavilion. Our loan of the Little Mermaid to China shows that we Danes are interested in other cultures and want to share our art and cultural treasures with them.

Frank Jensen, Lord Mayor of the City of Copenhagen, remarked, "We are proud to lend the Little Mermaid to China. I am convinced that she will be an excellent ambassador of Denmark, particularly since the Chinese already are very fond of Hans Christian Andersen and his fairytales. At the same time I am delighted that Ai Weiwei's video installation will make it possible for the Danes to follow her throughout her journey.

She arrived yesterday at the World EXPO in Shanghai and will be on display in Harbour Pool in the center of the Danish Pavilion from May 1 to October 31, 2010. Visitors will be able to ride bicycles around the pavilion, Copenhagen-style. It is expected that she will be seen by 70 million visitors.

See Notable Travels for more on Copenhagen or Copenhagen Tourism for additional information on the Little Mermaid .

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