Monday, October 25, 2010

Oslo, Norway: The Nobel Peace Center

We arrived in Oslo on a Friday afternoon in October. Eager with anticipation, I dropped my bags in my room, and walked aimlessly around the neighborhood, expecting to take a stroll, or maybe grab dinner. I started out toward the waterfront, figuring that that would be as good a place as any, I could at least take in the view. As it was, I was chasing daylight, it was already close to 5pm. Unknowingly, I came across the Noble Peace Center. Perfect!!! I was familiar with Alfred Nobel, and knew that the Peace Prize was awarded in Oslo in his honor, but I did not know of the museum and hadn't thought to ask. Many times when I'm in a new city I often look to see if there are art exhibits or galleries that interest me. In this instance, the featured exhibit was Strengths and Convictions: The life and times of the South African Nobel Peace Prize Laureates. I wasted no time proceeding to see what it was all about.
I found it to be a very compelling show of work documenting and highlighting the past decades and struggles of South Africa's fight for freedom and democracy. Featured are the four South African Peace Prize Laureates to whom much credit is given--Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, FW de Klerk and Albert Luthuli, the latter two, of whom I was not familiar.
The artwork of varied mediums captures the emotional distress and suffering of the peoples of South Africa and photographic images display the turbulence, violence, despair, perseverance and will of a country. It was a great treat to see this exhibit in such an appropriate venue.
Upstairs on the second level is an additional room that displays a field of LED lights that fade in and out, showing recurring biographies and headshots of all the awarded laureates throughout the years. I was proud to see President Obama among them.

After leaving the Nobel Center, I found a great pizza restaurant near the waterfront called Eataly. I sat solo and treated myself to a wonderful pizza dinner with caprese and wine. It was an almost perfect ending, to a perfect afternoon. The only thing missing was Mui Alto.

1 comment:

  1. The pizza looks amazing. Love the pics of the Peace Center. We need more people and place like this in our world. It is so inspiring. Great post :)