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Spanish Artist Cristóbal Gabarrón Unveils 'Masterpiece' to Commemorate 70 years of United Nations

PC: Society & Diplomatic Review
Englightened Universe in Central Park

The United Nations celebrated its 70th Anniverary on October 24, 2015. In commemoration of the event, 200 monuments around the world were lit up in the organization’s trademark azure blue. These included the Sydney Opera House, the Pyramids of Giza, and Rio de Janeiro’s Christ the Redeemer. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and a host of senior UN officials gathered in New York's Central Park to unveil a new sculpture, Enlightened Universe, comprised of a sphere surrounded by a spiral of 70 human figures – one for each of the 70 years since the UN was created, which Mr. Ban said, “depicts the great hope that all of us have invested in the organization”source here.

PC: Society & Diplomatic Review
Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon with spouse and artist

The statue depicts 70 life-size figures, each one “representing one of the 70 years of the un, but also people of different sexes, colors, religion and cultures joined in hand – here we have the diversity unite”, commented Gabarrón, who celebrated his own 70th birthday, last April.

The 70 figures surround a central globe, creating a human chain of UN values, including global citizenship, tolerance, solidarity, respect for nature and shared responsibility. The sculpture in its entirety and construction means to refer to the care for environment and nature: the sphere – “which represents the planet as well as perfection and imperfection”, added the artist – measures 6,371 millimetres in diameter to correspond to the Earth’s average radius of 6,371 kilometres.

This is the strong link between the sculpture and the United Nations, and the same may be said about the relationship between the artist himself and the United Nations. In fact, this is not the first time Gabarrón has produced a work of art for the UN.

Photo Credits: Society & Diplomatic Review
Artist Cristóbal Gabarrón with family and friends

“I have been collaborating with the United Nations since 1986”, recalled the Spanish painter, sculptor and mural-creator (his “Construction in the Woods — Project for a City” is one of the longest mural painting in the world, extending 350 feet along the outskirts of Valladolid, Spain). 1986 had been unanimously decreed by the 40th Session of the United Nations General Assembly as the International Year of Peace, and to mark the occasion, Gabarrón created ”Hopes For Peace”, an abstract painting evoking a particular dove. The image became an emblem for peace, the World Federation of United Nations Associations (Wfuna) issued a special courier cover with a reproduction of it, as well as a limited edition lithograph and a first-ever Wfuna card.

Prior to that, some of his works had long been exhibited at the United Nations Environment Programme in Nairobi, Kenya, and some had also been part of valuable private collections, such as the one of then United Nations General Assembly President, H.E. Sr. Jaime de Pinies.

Photo Credits: Society & Diplomatic Review
Permanent Representatives to the United Nations attended the ceremony

Such symbolism representing the natural world, human civilization and Universe is present in the works created then, just as in the one unveiled on October 24. Diversity and union, action and stillness, inner and outer space: a strong dualism characterizes this “Enlightened Universe”, inviting the spectator to reflect and act on today’s challenges.

Gabarrón has also collaborate with IOC and has been exposed and famous worldwide from America to Asia, passing through Europe. Besides the above mentioned, major works include the Olympic Mural for the Barcelona Olympic Games (1992), the Encounter Mural for the Universal Exhibition of Seville (1992) and the sculptural project “Atlanta Start” (1996) and the Millennium Chapel (2001). During the first half of 2015, his art landed for his first solo exhibition in China, hosted at the China Art Museum of Shanghai.

The sculpture will remain in Central Park – “a great venue, always of great importance to me”, told the sculptor – until November, 15, then it will be displayed in major cities across the globe.

Photo Credits: Society & Diplomatic Review

For more information on Cristóbal Gabarrón:



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