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Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair Memorial

Those who thirst for freedom die but their souls live on in resistance.  
Liu Xiaobo -

— 劉曉波 —

3rd Anniversary of Liu Xiaobo Passing

We will never forget Liu Xiaobo: Human rights advocates honour Nobel Laureate

On July 3, 2020, the anniversary of the death of Liu Xiaobo, human rights groups commemorated the incredible life of the Nobel Laureate, writer, philosopher, and lifelong advocate for human rights in China.

Amnesty International, the Toronto Association for Democracy in China, and the Alliance Canada Hong Kong laid a commemorative wreath on the Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair Memorial, which sits on the front lawn of the Ottawa office of Amnesty International Canada.

Media release is at TADC web site.






Ihsaan Gardee of Amnesty International and Cherie Wong representing ACHK and TADC (Photo credit: Amnesty International)

Empty Chair that Overflows

Video clip by Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International, presented during the 31st Anniversary Tiananmen Massacre Memorial on June 4, 2020. Subtitles available in English, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese.

2020年6月4日於「六四」31周年悼念會發放國際特赦秘書長 Alex Neve 的片段。附有英文、繁體中文及简体中文字幕供選擇

Video provided by Amnesty International 片段由國際特赦提供


Unveiling of Empty Chair

Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair Memorial was officially unveiled on August 13, 2019. Live broadcast video of the unveiling ceremony is available from Amnesty International Facebook Page.

The memorial is installed in the front yard of Amnesty International Canada's headquarter in Ottawa. It is not only open to the public at all times, visitors are encouraged to sit in the Chair to reflect Liu's courage and determination to fight for freedom, democracy and human rights with the ultimate price of his life.

Speakers in the unveiling ceremony included Setsuko Thurlow, recipient of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons; Wang Juntao, political activist and friend of Liu during the 1989 pro-democracy movement; Ti-Anna Wang, daughter of Wang Binzhang, political prisoner and founder of the Chinese pro-democracy movement overseas; and Senator Con Di Nino.

The Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair Memorial is a joint effort by TADC, Amnesty International and PEN Canada. Since the announcement in May 2018, more than C$40,000 has been raised by crowd funding to finance the project. Liu was sentenced 13 years imprisonment in 2009 and died in prison in 2017. The Chinese govermnet refused him to travel to Oslo to receive the 2010 Nobel Peace Price. His absence was marked by an empty chair on stage during the award ceremony. The bronze replica of the empty chair becomes the Liu Xiaobo Memorial. The sculpture is by Ruth Abernethy, a Canadian sculptor whose iconic works include the Glenn Gould statue at CBC in Toronto, the Oscar Peterson statue at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, as well as the Goddess of Democracy at York University, Toronto.



於揭幕禮當日發表演說的嘉賓包括:代表「國際廢除核武器運動」接受2017年諾貝爾和平獎的Setsuko Thurlow、1989年民主運動中與劉曉波為友並積極參與政治活動的王軍濤、政治犯和海外華人民主運動創始人王炳章的女兒王天安、及加拿大參議員Con Di Nino。

劉曉波空座椅紀念碑是多倫多支持中國民運會丶加拿大國際特赦及加拿大筆會合力,自2018年5月起衆籌集資超過四萬加元而成。劉曉波於2009年被判監13年,於2017年在監獄中去世。由於中國政府拒絕讓他前往奧斯陸接受2010年諾貝爾和平獎,頒獎禮舞台上以一張空座椅標誌著他的缺席。頒獎舞台上空座椅的青銅複製品就成為劉曉波紀念碑。雕塑由加拿大雕塑家 Ruth Abernethy 鑄造,她的代表作品包括加拿大廣播公司於多倫多的格倫古爾德雕像,渥太華國家藝術中心的奧斯卡彼得森雕像,以及多倫多約克大學的民主女神像。

Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair sculpture was on preview to the public on June 1, unveiled by (from left to right) Con DiNino, former Canada Senator, Dick Chan, TADC Founding Chair, Joshua Bowman, U of T Students Union President, Jan Wong, journalist and June4 eye-witness.

The Empty Chair memorial is installed in the front yard of Amnesty International Canada's headquarter in Ottawa.

312 Laurier Ave. E, Ottawa, ON K1N 6P6


Donate 捐款

Although the Empty Chair has successfully completed, this web page remains open to accept donation. Collected donations will be merged into TADC general operating account to support future maintenance of the sculpture as well as TADC events on the advance of democracy, freedom and human rights in China.


Donation can be made using INTERAC e-Transfer from within web banking app of a Canadian bank. Please add email address [email protected] as e-Transfer recipient. Interac e-Transfer is fast, secure and convenient, and without service charge on both parties. Transfer will be automatically accepted by Toronto Association for Democracy in China.

Donation from anywhere in the world can be made through PayPal. Please click the above PayPal Donate button to make payment from your credit or debit card as guest or with your PayPal account. Transaction will show payment made to TADC. If you have a Canadian bank account, you are encouraged to use INTERAC e-Transfer to avoid PayPal transaction fee to us.

Cheque or Money Order can be sent to the address below. Please indicate donation is for Liu Xiaobo Empty Chair memorial.
Toronto Association for Democracy in China
PO Box 90594, Cedar Heights
Scarborough, Ontario
M1H 3G7 Canada

Liu Xiaobo was awarded the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize during his imprisonment in China. At the award ceremony in Oslo, the award was presented to an empty chair. In 2017, Liu became the second Nobel Peace Prize laureate to die in state custody.

Together with you, we will turn his empty chair into a life-size bronze memorial. It will be a place for us to honour his bravery - he who had stood up to the Chinese authoritarian government and defended human rights with his life.

Even more important, the memorial will be a place for us to reflect on our humanity:

Why, in this inter-connected global village, we could only watch in horror as a Nobel Peace Prize laureate withered away in a Chinese prison and feel powerless to do anything?

Why, we could only watch in dismay his ashes disappeared into the ocean against the wish of his beloved wife Liu Xia, who has been in illegal confinement, but unable to get our government of the free societies to break their silence?

The empty chair in Oslo was filled with courage, dignity and a strong belief in human rights and democracy. Let‘s fill our Empty Chair Memorial with admiration, inspiration and hope.








About Us

The project to erect a Liu Xiaobo Memorial is funded entirely by the public. Your generous donation is key to keeping the legacy of Liu. Donation will remain anonymous unless requested by donors.

This project is headed by Toronto Association for Democracy in China in cooperation with PEN Canada and Amnesty International Canada. TADC is a not-for-profit organization registered in Ontario, Canada. At this time, donation receipt cannot be used for tax purposes.

Please visit TADC web site for the privacy statement.