The UN’s $23 million Ceiling


It comes as no surprise to this artist that a new controversy has stirred up at the unveiling of the United Nation‘s newest art installation, the Barcelo ceiling in the new Human Rights and Alliance of Civilisations Chamber.

Critics state that the millions of Euros used to pay for 100 tons of paint and 20 assistants would have been better spent to alleviate the suffering of the poor, pay for food, health care, and housing. And news reports say that Spain used money from its foreign aid to fund part of its ‘gift’ to the United Nations.

Supporters of the new ceiling, including UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, say that the creation of the art demonstrates a new breed of innovation that echoes the work of the UN on the eve of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights.

What do you say?

On View: The Ceiling of the Human Rights and Alliance of Civilisations Chamber, United Nations, Geneva, Switzerland. Artist, Miqual Barcelo. 2008.

About the Artist: Miquel Barcelo, Spain.

Home Page Images: REUTERS/Denis Balibouse November 18, 2008; El País Semanal, Nº 1.675 Domingo 2 de Noviembre de 2008; Arte y Parte, Número 77, octubre/noviembre 2008.

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