Lennon’s bronze face with a flower instead of his right eye was unveiled at a ceremony attended by some 200 viewers, with live performance of The Beatles music.
Immediately after the ceremony, people rushed to take selfies with the Lennon bust.
Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius said at the ceremony that the beauty of the Lithuanian capital lies in the emergence of some odd things.
“Let’s admit it, Lennon was not Lithuanian, he never came to Vilnius, did not sing about Vilnius and did not even have a Lithuanian girlfriend, as far as I know. However, this is probably the beauty of it – birth of a new creation can be seen out of this,” said the Vilnius mayor, referring also to a monument to US musician Frank Zappa in the Lithuanian capital city.
“He wasn’t afraid to speak up and his anti-war songs, like Imagine and Give Peace a Chance, are still enjoyed today,” said Hunt.
“John Lennon was more than just an activist, he was a one-man cultural phenomenon. His influence is still felt all over the world, including here, of course, in Lithuania. He died 35 years ago but his ideas and music are still with us,” said the ambassador.
Photographer Saulius Paukštys, who is behind the idea, has said that the bronze sculpture of Lennon should make Vilnius more beautiful and peaceful, “just like Lennon wanted”.
Some 20 years ago, Paukštys built a bust of another prominent musician, Frank Zappa, in central Vilnius.
The Lennon bust was the second sculpture unveiled in Vilnius on Thursday. Earlier in the day, President Dalia Grybauskaitė and Finland’s former president Tarja Halonen inaugurated a giant sculpture entitled Suomis (The Finn), given as a present to Lithuania by Finland to emphasize friendship between the two countries.