An Advertising Column for Düsseldorf’s Newest Sculpture

What is the story behind those realistic sculptures on Düsseldorf’s advertising columns?

realistic sculptures Dusseldorf advertising columns woman reading

The Reader ( Neumannstraße ): Christoph Pöggeler’s latest sculpture / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)

Christoph Pöggeler, the artist behind the”Säulenheiligen” or sculptures of everyday people living and working in the city, recently introduced his tenth statue onto the Düsseldorf skyline. Advertising pillars form the base for these special sculptures that Pöggeler has now placed at ten locations in Düsseldorf . His stylites (or “pillar dwellers”) are life-sized polyester figures that look totally realistic and have been looking on Düsseldorf’s commuters, families and tourists since 2001. In a sense, high up on the columns Pöggeler gets to show people who are usually down on the streets below.

The most recent sculpture, called “The Reader” can be seen now on the road in Flingern, Neumannstraße. Like all Pöggeler’s stylites, it takes its inspiration from everyday life – in this case, a woman waiting at a bus stop or train station, who has brought a book to pass the time.

On June 7th 2003 real people were presented on five advertising pillars within the performance “Live Stylites” in Düsseldorf. People of different ages, gender, professions and different social backgrounds were given the opportunity to talk about anything and everything from their own pillar or to do anything they wanted. The individuals included among others a businessman, a homeless person, an office worker, a dancer, a child and an illustrator.

Düsseldorf  Tourismus offers an organized walking tour called “Auf den Spuren der Säulenheiligen” or “in the footsteps of stylite”. Lasting around two hours, the tour currently visits six of the ten Düsseldorf “Stylites”, and includes a talk on the life and work of the artist.

realistic sculptures Dusseldorf advertising columns mother child

The Stranger (St. Lambertus ) : A woman holds her child closely to herself, looking towards the Rhine / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


Fashion shoot? A professional photographer using a classic camera. / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


The Businessman: Suit, tie and briefcase – off to a meeting, or heading home for the day? / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


The Couple (Burgplatz): holding hands but gazing in separate directions… / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


The Couple, number 2 ( Poststraße): Certainly more romance here than the previous / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


The Tourist (Kaiserswerther- Stockumer Kirchstraße) Opposite of The Businessman / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


Marlis (Medienhafen): One of two sculptures near the WDR building in Dusseldorf’s harbour area / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


Father and Son (Ost/Immermannstraße ) : This sculpture had living models. / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


The Bride ( Citadell/Schulstraße): Is that a faint smile? / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)


Hats off to Christoph Pöggeler, Artist / Photo: Bretz, Andreas (abr)

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