Gateway Community College (GCC) and the City of New Haven Peace Commission, in collaboration with the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities and the city of New Haven, will host an acclaimed International Anti-War Cartoon Exhibit March 11-22 in the Gateway Art Gallery. The thought provoking exhibit, featuring 70 anti-war cartoons from around the world, commemorates the Peace Commission’s 25th anniversary. The public is invited to a reception at the GCC Art Gallery, 20 Church Street, at 5 p.m. Thursday March 14. The exhibit highlights Gateway’s ongoing commitment to being a regional resource for peace studies and nonviolent conflict resolution.
After travelling through Europe, the exhibit’s first U.S. stop will be in the Gateway Art Gallery. The cartoons will include the Grand Prix winner, chosen from more than 500 professional submissions from around the world.
The prize is awarded by the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities, an organization of global cities, designated as Peace Messengers by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1985. New Haven was one of the original designees and is a founding member of the organization. For the past 12 years, New Haven has filled the position of International President.
“Five hundred artists responded to the call for submissions to the acclaimed International Exhibit of Anti-War Cartoons from all over the world, using the medium of this art form, the cartoon, to express their opposition to violence and war, in the long tradition of artists using their talents for peace,” said Alfred L. Marder, chairman of the City of New Haven Peace Commission and president of the International Association of Peace Messenger Cities. “We are especially pleased that Gateway Community College is a leading sponsor of the exhibit.”
Violent conflict is one of the most serious problems in the world today and New Haven directly attempts to address community violence. The Gateway community is actively involved with many organizations that seek to understand the causes of conflict and examine ways to encourage peace building. GCC offers courses in peace and conflict studies and the college embeds civic action, mediation, health responses to violence, nonviolent communication and collaborative conflict resolution into its interdisciplinary curriculum.
Earlier this year, GCC’s Library and Learning Commons received $2,000 in funding support from the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) to establish a new Peace Studies Special Collection which will serve as a resource center for educators, youth and families on topics related to nonviolence, justice and peacemaking. The college is also hosting events as part of a discussion series, “Nonviolent Conflict Resolution: From the Personal to Communal, Local to Global.”
Marder said the public has a unique opportunity to see the exhibit before it heads to the United Nations where it will be on display in April. Marder said he hopes that the college community, the greater New Haven community and students from high schools from the region will visit the exhibit and use it as a springboard to talk about peace.