Ben Shephard intervenes during debate on coronation protests
An artist who soaked 25 copies of Prince Harry’s memoir Spare in human blood has claimed he sold a few of them for five-figure sums, and he is now looking to stage a further protest at King Charles’s Coronation on Saturday.
Russian artist Andrei Molodkin smeared the books in the blood donated by Afghan people following the Duke of Sussex’s controversial remarks in his memoir about killing 25 Taliban members while serving with the British Army in Afghanistan.
A spokesman for Mr Molodkin said the blood-soaked copies of Spare went on display this week in Kennington, London, and seven copies have now been sold for at least $10,000 (£8,000) each, Sky News reports.
The artist has previously used blood to protest the same claims made by Prince Harry, and in March this year, Mr Molodkin projected an image of the British Royal Coat of Arms stained red with human blood on St. Paul’s Cathedral.
He also made headlines last year after creating a sculpture featuring an image of Vladimir Putin that was filled with blood donated by Ukrainian fighters, but the artist has since had to flee Russia for France.
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25 copies of Spare have been soaked in human blood donated by Afghan people
A long-time fan of the artist, Fabien Nordmann, has now said he will be buying a copy of the Duke’s blood-soaked memoir for more than the asking price as he wants to secure “one of the first editions”.
Mr Nordmann said of Mr Molodkin: “He’s a visionary. He told me the price was $10,000 and I said: ‘What about getting the number one or two?'”
Mr Nordmann, who lives in Paris and is currently working in the Ivory Coast, said he is yet to receive his blood-covered copy of Spare but will make arrangements to collect it when he returns to the French capital later this month.
The 77-year-old said he was not disturbed by Mr Molodkin’s use of blood, saying it was “to shock”, but insisting it was “less shocking” than Harry’s remarks.
Copies of the blood-soaked books went on display this week in Kennington, London
Mr Molodkin has previously said any money raised from the sale of the blood-soaked copies of Spare will be donated to Afghan charities.
The blood used for the books was originally donated to fill the sculpture Mr Molodkin created of the Royal Coat of Arms, which was displayed in St Paul’s Cathedral.
Upon the release of his bombshell memoir in January, Prince Harry faced criticism for revealing that he killed 25 Taliban fighters while serving with the British Army in Afghanistan.
He wrote in his memoir: “While in the heat and fog of combat, I didn’t think of those 25 as people. You can’t kill people if you think of them as people. You can’t really harm people if you think of them as people. They were chess pieces removed from the board, Bads taken away before they could kill Goods.”
The prince also penned that it “wasn’t a number that gave me any satisfaction…but neither was it a number that made me feel ashamed”.
Prince Harry served two tours in Afghanistan during his time in the British Army
Seven copies of the blood-soaked memoirs have now been sold for at least £8,000 each
A long-time fan of Mr Molodkin, Mr Nordmann, said of Harry’s claims: “The son of the King said, like, it was a game. This is really shocking. You don’t kill like a game.”
Mr Nordmann said he plans to keep his blood-soaked copy of Spare in his home “near a book of the Rolling Stones”.
Meanwhile, artist Mr Molodkin is now planning a protest for the King’s Coronation on Saturday, when a video game will be available to access on mobile phones near Buckingham Palace.
The artist said the prototype game reflects “the very real atrocities that were committed in the Iraq and Afghani wars”, while also adding that the ceremony itself is a “vulgar display of power and wealth”.
Mr Molodkin is now planning a protest for the King’s Coronation on Saturday
A link to the prototype game will be sent to selected people on the day of the historic Coronation, and it will only function within a mile radius of the Palace.
It will use similar technology to that used by Mr Molodkin last May, when he said an image of an anti-war sculpture containing the blood of Ukrainian fighters was live-streamed at Moscow’s Red Square, as Vladimir Putin oversaw Russia’s Victory Day parade.
Of the King’s coronation, Mr Molodkin said in a statement: “The money being spent on this vulgar display of power and wealth is built on the blood of victims around the world over many generations.”
He added: “People are unable to feed their children and heat their homes so this display of pomp and ceremony should be seen for what it is. It is a violent assault on democracy through the monarchy’s quest to maintain its bloodline.”
He added: “People are unable to feed their children and heat their homes so this display of pomp and ceremony should be seen for what it is.
“It is a violent assault on democracy through the monarchy’s quest to maintain its bloodline.”