David Černý’s sculpture Quo Vadis commemorates the Trabant, a car which, despite being the pride of Communist East Germany, was commonly derided as a worthless piece of junk—though perhaps not as worthless as it is with human legs. It is also a symbol of the fall of Communism, and the migration of many East Germans to the West, since so many of them came in the iconic car.
The title, Latin for “Where are you going?” alludes to an episode in Christian myth where an image of Christ appears to St. Peter. After Peter asks Christ this question, Christ’s reply is that he is going to Rome, to be crucified once again, prefiguring Peter’s own martyrdom by crucifixion. The title suggests that Communism’s survivors are also being “crucified again,” and that the promise of prosperity under capitalism may be no more real than that of the Communist past.