Saturday 14 July 2012

Hirst, others re-image AK-47 rifles in peace project

Damien Hirst joins 22 artists in an art exhibition that reinterprets the AK-47 rifle as a weapon of peace.

Scheduled to hold in September 21, 2012 as part of a major event, Peace Day – to be marked by the Peace One Day Concert at Wembley Arena – the concept, according to sources was conceived by photographer Bran Symondson, who said his experience as a soldier in Afghanistan led to the idea.

Founder of Peace One Day Jeremy Gilley and curator, Jake Chapman. 
Artists are expected to join the peace-building project by “refashioning and decommissioning AK-47 rifles into works of art,” Symondson, said.

It is part of the yearly AKA Peace exhibition, holding at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London on 25 - 30 September.

“The exhibited works will then be auctioned with proceeds of the sale going to the Peace One Day charity," Symondson disclosed. 

"Everyone knows the AK-47 and I thought, wouldn't it be great to take this iconic weapon and turn it into a thing of intrigue and art, rather than one of fear," he explained.

He noted that though there appears to be “glamour in war and conflict,” the project, he cautioned, should not be seen as glamourising weapon. "You give a stick to a boy and he'll make it into a gun. There is glamour in war and conflict. I don't think this project glamorises AK-47; it gets the message across that it can be used for something else.
  "The fact that these AK-47s have been used, that they've come from war zones and now they are decomissioned...there's 24 less AK-47s in the world doing damage," he said.

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