This six-meter-long aluminum bench is shaped like a gentle arch so that those sitting on it are brought closer together. It is designed as a semicircle, so that those who sit on it slide closer together. It is almost impossible to sit on opposite sides of the bench. engraved on the bench is a quotation from Nelson Mandela, “The best weapon is to sit down and talk,
The installation is intended to be a symbol of diplomacy and dialogue that pays tribute to the Nobel Peace Prize laureates and celebrates their efforts to unite people and resolve conflict across the world.
It was unveiled at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City on Nelson Mandela Day, July 18, 2019, and remained there until October, 2019, when it was moved to Norway and formally installed on December 8, 2021 in the plaza in front of the Nobel Center and the Olso City Hall, where the Peace Prize is awarded annually. .
“In today’s society, with growing differences, polarization and hard-hitting online debates, the ability to create dialogue is perhaps more important than ever. We want to put dialogue on the agenda and contribute to a culture where there is room for a broad range of voices. And we can learn a lot from the Peace Prize laureates, “said Nobel Peace Center executive director Kjersti Fløgstad.
The Peace Bench is from the Norwegian architectural design firm Snøhetta, Vestre, an outdoor furniture manufacturer and Hydro, which manufactured the aluminum. It weighs nearly 400 pounds and has a 21-foot span.