Plans for a statue made from 100,000 knives is stirring up controversy in Britain, where a 24-ft ‘Knife Angel’ is under construction. The knives come from all over the UK, seized as part of the Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife campaign, which places bins around the country where Brits are encouraged to anonymously surrender their knives in the name of public safety. The statue is meant to memorialize the victims of knife crime, but some say it is a monument to violence and are organizing against it.
A Facebook group calling itself ‘A National Education Against Violence and Aggression‘ has banded together to say “No” to the Knife Angel. Some members complain that the use of ‘weapons’ in its construction offends them.
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The statue, which is scheduled to be finished in the fall, will tour the country, including a stop at London’s busy Trafalgar Square. According to a video produced last year by the BBC, the statue’s creator, artist Alfie Bradley does plan on including knives that have been used in crimes. “My goal in this is to make sure that people can feel emotion and understand what it’s about, because it’s a serious issue,” he says.
The controversy surrounding the knife monument in the UK stands in stark contrast to a sculpture installed in Italy last summer. The work of art (pictured below) sits in Piazza Italia Square in Maniago to honor the region’s centuries-long history of knife craftsmanship.