New artwork shows everyone responsible for peacebuilding
ROME – ‘Si vis pacem, para bellum,’ if you want peace, prepare for war, goes the expression. “Isn’t it now clear this method doesn’t work?” writes Cristiana Collu, Director of the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art.
‘Si vis pacem, para pacem,’ if you want peace, build peace, is the message of the National Gallery’s installation, PEACE, which will be interactive from May 18.
Seen from above, the artwork resembles LEGO bricks, while close up the components are white pallets, soon to be constructed in whatever text or pictures visitors choose.
“It is not enough to be against war or simply to desire peace,” states Collu on the gallery website. “Peace is not the absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition to benevolence, trust, justice,” in the words of Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza.
“We can do a lot every day to change the assumptions that have triggered wars up to now: no longer "si vis pacem, para bellum" - if you want peace, prepare for war - which has always legitimised a system of deterrence or dissuasion, which in turn has done nothing but fuel fear and war as the only means to achieve peace, denying all its principles.”
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