A reminder of the human cost of conflict…
The text on the plaque reads:
In 1995, 50 years after the end of the Second World War this sculpture by Josefina de Vasconcellos has been given by Richard Branson as a token of reconciliation. An identical sculpture has been placed on behalf of the people of Coventry in the Peace Garden, Hiroshima, Japan.
Both sculptures remind us that, in the face of destructive forces, human dignity and love will triumph over disaster and bring nations together in respect and peace.
Josefina de Vasconcellos said that, “The sculpture was originally conceived in the aftermath of the War. Europe was in shock, people were stunned. I read in a newspaper about a woman who crossed Europe on foot to find her husband, and I was so moved that I made the sculpture. Then I thought that it wasn’t only about the reunion of two people but hopefully a reunion of nations which had been fighting.”
In 1995 (to mark the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II) bronze casts of the sculpture Reconciliation were placed in the ruins of Coventry Cathedral and in the Hiroshima Peace Park in Japan.
Read Josefina de Vasconcellos’ obituary in The Guardian.