LAUSANNE, Switzerland (Nov 15, 2023) - In commemoration of World Taekwondo’s Golden Jubilee, a Taekwondo statue was unveiled at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne today during a special ceremony attended by International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach and World Taekwondo President Chungwon Choue.
The statue, which stands close to the Olympic Flame and statue of the founder of the Olympic Movement, Baron Pierre de Coubertin, depicts two Taekwondo athletes mid-contest, both attempting to land a trademark kick to the head. The statue is mounted on an octagonal platform which displays the World Taekwondo and Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation (THF) logos, the five continents and the phrase ‘Sport of Hopes and Dreams’.
Among those in attendance at the ceremony were IOC Vice President Ser Miang Ng, IOC Member and International Skating Union President Jaeyoul Kim, World Taekwondo Vice Presidents and members of the Council in attendance, World Baseball/Softball Confederation President Riccardo Fraccari, International University Sports Federation (FISU) President Leonz Eder, Kukkiwon President Dongsub Lee, and Taekwondo Promotion Foundation Acting Chairman Jonggap Lee.
IOC President Bach said:
“It is such a great honour and pleasure to see Taekwondo is taking its rightful place in park of the Olympic Museum among the other inspiring artworks. This rightful place is more than deserved as Taekwondo is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. This is a remarkable achievement in light of the fact you made your debut in the Olympic Games only 23 years ago at Sydney 2000. Since then you have not stopped growing your wonderful sport which now enjoys a truly global appeal. I would like to highlight the outstanding vision and leadership of Dr Choue. This statue stands for your important place in the Olympic Programme and Movement and your strong standing in our global community.”
Speaking following the World Taekwondo President Choue said:
“I have been dreaming of this moment for a long, long time. For many years, I wished for a statue to symbolize Taekwondo's importance in the Olympic Family. Today is the day.
“I wish to thank so many people, but especially to the IOC President for accepting this dream of mine. I also wish to thank Ser Miang and to the Olympic Museum director, Angelita, for making this dream into a reality.
“As you can see, we have many friends from the Council who are here today. This is true solidarity and friendship. We always help each other no matter how difficult things may be. Even more importantly, we are happy because our sport can make others happy.
“Taekwondo is a sport that aspires Olympism and Peace. This is what makes Taekwondo a truly global sport for all.”
World Taekwondo commissioned lead sculptor Milos Ippoliti to create the statue, along with co-sculptors Paolo Vanzolini and Gianluca Pompilio.
The ceremony continued inside the Olympic Museum with a Poomsae demonstration by Swiss and Italian athletes.
IOC President Bach presented President Choue with the Olympic Cup in his capacity as THF Chairman, for the organisation’s commitment to addressing the global humanitarian situation through sports.
Click here to watch highlight video of the ceremony.