‘What unites human beings, ears, eyes, loves, hopes and toes is huge and wonderful. What divides human beings is small and mean.’
This statement is taken from Bob and Roberta Smith's LETTER TO AN UNKNOWN SOLDIER and forms part of the artist and Cass Professor's new work for LIGHTS OUT, a nationwide initiative which takes place on the 4th August. Lights Out is an invitation to everyone in the UK to turn off their lights from 10pm to 11pm on the 4th August, leaving just one candle or light on for a shared moment of reflection. The initiative is accompanied by a series of 'moments' including work by well known artists including Bob and Roberta's in Belfast. Other artists include Jeremy Deller, Nalini Malani and Bedwyr Williams.
Bob and Roberta Smith think that the common goals humanity aims for; love, peace and well-being, outweigh the things that divide us. The famous football match on Christmas day 1914 between Germans and allied troops enjoying sport together is emblematic of this feeling.
Bob and Roberta Smith take over the East Lawn of the City Hall grounds in Belfast to create an illuminating installation of the statement, using letters designed and constructed together with local artists and community groups. These groups, with diverse age ranges and backgrounds, respond to their understanding of the statement and to the commemoration of WW1.
Each letter of the statement accommodates a set of candles and at 10pm on Monday 4 August, Bob and Roberta Smith invite the city of Belfast to ignite the candles in a moment of shared reflection.
Bob and Roberta Smith is the name of a British contemporary artist, writer, author, musician, art education advocate and keynote speaker. Seeing art as an important element in democratic life, much of their art takes the form of painted signs which advocate the arts to Government.
You can read a BBC Interview with Bob and Roberta about his interest in World War One here
- Website: www.1418now.org.uk
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