Non-Violence, UNNY004G, 1989, Luxembourg


Gift ID: 

Entitled Non-Violence, this bronze sculpture depicts a 45-calibre revolver with its barrel tied in a knot.  The artist did this work in 1980 after hearing that his friend, John Lennon, had been murdered.   Mr. Reutersward, became so upset and angry over this senseless death and the many other outbursts of unnecessary violence that he went to his studio and started working on the “nonviolence” project.    The sculpture consists of a large replica in bronze of a 45-calibre revolver, the barrel of which is tied into a knot. The gun is cocked, but the knot makes it clear that it will not shoot.  Replicas of the sculpture have been installed in many countries since then. The sculpture at the U.N. was one of the first three versions of the sculpture, bought by the Luxembourg government and offered to the UN in 1988. It was said then that "With Non-Violence, Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd has not only endowed the United Nations with a cherished work of art; he has enriched the consciousness of humanity with a powerful symbol. It is a symbol that encapsulates, in a few simple curves, the greatest prayer of man: that which asks not for victory, but for peace."

Location (Building): 
Exterior Ground
Donor Country: 
Artist or Maker: 
Carl Frederik Reutersward
Exterior Ground Floor: 
GA Podium
79 x 44 x 60 in.
Donation Date: 
June 11, 1989