In May, I was in Geneva to participate in the United Nations’ Universal Periodic Review of Morocco and India. I went for a run one day along Quai Wilson on Lake Geneva and discovered an exhibition of political cartoons. The exhibition was sponsored by Cartooning for Peace/Dessins pour la paix, an initiative conceived of by French political cartoonist Plantu and launched at the United Nations in 2006. The goal of Cartooning for Peace is to promote better understanding and mutual respect between people of different faiths and cultures. Cartooning for Peace also works to promote freedom of expression and to protect the rights of cartoonists.
Cartooning for Peace and the City of Geneva created the new International Prize for Editorial Cartoons to honor cartoonists for their talent, outstanding contribution and commitment to the values of tolerance, freedom and peace. On May 3, 2012 – the World Day of Press Freedom – the prize was awarded for the first time to four Iranian political cartoonists.
The exhibition Dessins Pour La Paix 2012 displayed the work of the award-winning Iranian artists Mana Neyestani, Kianoush, Firoozeh Mozaffari and Hassan Karimzade.
In addition, the exhibition included dozens of political cartoons by cartoonists around the world on the themes of freedom of expression, the Arab spring and the rights of women.
The exhibition in Geneva ran from May 3 to June 3, 2012. The full catalogue of the cartons featured in the exhibit is now available online.
Take a stroll with me along Quai Wilson and witness the power of the cartooning for peace!