“In 1993 the Culture Ministry purchased the bronze statue of the commander, work of the late sculptor Yiannis Pappas and granted it to the municipality of Athens in order to place it in a prominent spot. [However] twenty one years later, the city of Athens has not found a suitable spot to place the statue, something which can only cause grief and anger."
Alexander III of Macedon (20/21 July 356 – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a King of the Ancient Hellenic of Macedon, member of the Argead dynasty. Alexander succeeded his father, Philip II, to the throne at the age of twenty. He spent most of his ruling years on an unprecedented military campaign through Asia and northeast Africa, until by the age of thirty he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world, stretching from Hellas to Egypt and into present-day Pakistan. He was undefeated in battle and is considered one of history's most successful military commanders.
Alexander's legacy includes the cultural diffusion his conquests engendered. He founded some twenty cities that bore his name, most notably Alexandria in Egypt. Alexander's settlement of Greek colonists and the resulting spread of Hellenic culture in the east resulted in a new Hellenistic civilization, aspects of which were still evident in the traditions of the Byzantine Empire in the mid-15th century. Alexander became legendary as a classical hero in the mould of Achilles, and he features prominently in the history and myth of Greek and non-Hellenic cultures. He became the measure against which military leaders compared themselves, and military academies throughout the world still teach his tactics.
A statue of Alexander currently resides in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki, which is also the capital of the region of Macedonia, as well as in Skopje, the capital of the Republic of Macedonia. The initiative to place the statue in Athens as well is seen as a response to the placing of the statue in the Republic of Macedonia. The move of the Members of Parliament comes a few days after the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia’s (FYROM) parliament speaker Antonio Milososki published a picture of himself and members of a group of climbers from Greece’s neighbouring country on Mount Olympus, holding a flag bearing the Vergina Sun, an ancient Greek symbol, butting relations even more on edge. In their appeal, the lawmakers complained of:
"[I]ntentional foot-dragging... even as the nationalist zealotry of Skopje continues to grow and the appropriation of Greek history and Greek symbols continues."
The statue was due to be placed in downtown Athens’ Kotzia square but was stopped due to bureaucratic issues in 2010. It does remains available for art lovers to admire in an outdoor exhibition space at the late artist’s studio in Athens’ Zografou district.