France keeps promise to UN, 75 years on

6th September 2005, Comments 0 comments

GENEVA, Sept 5 (AFP) - French culture minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres on Monday officially bestowed on the United Nations in Geneva a tapestry that France promised in 1930 but never delivered because of the vicissitudes of the 20th century.

GENEVA, Sept 5 (AFP) - French culture minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres on Monday officially bestowed on the United Nations in Geneva a tapestry that France promised in 1930 but never delivered because of the vicissitudes of the 20th century.

"This gesture is simply keeping our word," de Vabres said at the ceremony. "It was an obligation for our country. This tapestry, dedicated to peace, is a call for the mobilisation of all states during this 60th anniversary year of the United Nations."

The five by four meter (17 by 13 foot) work was created in the Gobelins workshop in Paris on a commission by then foreign minister Aristide Briand, who wanted it to hang at the headquarters of the League of Nations.

It was completed in 1937 but never delivered as Europe hastened toward war. After the war, the tapestry, designed by Othon Friesz, depicting peace as a nude woman advancing toward a rising sun, was considered too old-fashioned to be offered to the new United Nations.

Now, along with a pair of blue Sèvres vases, it will adorn the Palace of Nations' newly decorated French Salon, which is used by visiting chiefs of state.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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