By the bridge over the pond in the city park the statue of a mermaid rises  from the water. With her graceful body, half woman, half fish, this mythical figure is a most endearing sight.

Kreitz preferred portraying the human body, young girls, mermaids and angels. He created  the  deceased seafarers’ memorial on the seafront in Oostende. When representing animals Kreitz only considered the decorative shape  to be important.

With this sculpture of a mermaid the sculptor artfully surpasses the level of an ordinary garden sculpture. The hairdo of the woman is stylised and the fish scales present a certain tautness. Between both breathes the charm of the female body. The heavenly naturalness, the smooth expression of the face, the flowing contours of the body, the gracious upward movement of the hands and the untroubled nakedness provide this statue with a sensual atmosphere.

It is interesting to compare this statue with ‘Zittend Naakt (Seated Nude)’ , also by Willy Kreitz, in the Stationsstraat.


KREITZ Willy (1903-1982)

Willy Kreitz was a student at the Academy of fine Arts in Antwerpen (Van Lerius Prize) and consequently at the National Higher Institute (amongst others in the studio Ernest Wijnants). In 1932 he won the ‘Grote Prijs van Rome’. In 1936 he became a teacher at the Academy. From 1964 until 1968 he replaced Mark Macken at the Higher Institute in Antwerpen.


Kunst in de Stad -  June 15th 1991