Peace Gorilla to Face United Nations

Sculpture born in Greenpoint brings greetings of peace to the world.

One of the initial steps in the process of casting Peace Gorilla in bronze at the Bedi Makky art foundry in Greenpoint with owner, Bill Makky (l) and artist Noa Bornstein (r). Photo Credit: Margaret Metzger Production Still from the documentary in progress.

Updated on 12.04.20
originally published on 11.20.20

Peace Gorilla a bronze sculpture created by Noa Bornstein, a Greenpoint based artist, will be arriving  has arrived at Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza (E. 47 St. bet. 1 Ave. and 2 Ave.) on November 21 and will remain through August 2021. The sculpture is part of the NYC Parks’ Art in the Parks. This message of the piece is one of human peace and unity, and there couldn’t be a more purposeful placement for that message than a plaza across from the United Nations. Funding was made possible for the project in part by the Puffin Foundation.

Come by and hi-five Peace Gorilla and learn the word for ‘friend’ in 90 languages inscribed on the base

“The gorilla extended her arm to me as I was making her,” the artist Noa Bornstein relates. “I was able to interpret the gesture: ‘Shalom, Salaam, Tomodachi—Hello, Peace, Friend.”

The bronze gorilla, which was cast at the Bedi Makky art foundry in Greenpoint, also sits on a concrete pedestal emblazoned with the word for friend in 90 languages — beginning with the six official languages of the UN.

Bornstein’s previous public projects include the small bronze, Live Well! whose first installation was in TriBeCa Park in 2000 and then traveled over seven years to parks in several other states. Bornstein is a painter also an describes her work as centering on human beings, “with the hope or belief in the human potential for intelligence and compassion — and the tension between these and other human propensities.” Her more recent public sculptures are of other fellow creatures who look for a connection with us, Praying Mantis Seeks Friends and Pig Seeks Friends — both temporary installations through NYC Parks and City Parks Foundation in 2017 and 2018.

The Peace Gorilla is ready to make friends across the street from the United Nations in 
Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza, 1st Ave at 47th Street in Manhattan
Mother and child look for their language Photo credit: Roei Ben-Jackob.

Peace Gorilla will be on view at Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza (E. 47 St. bet. 1 Ave. and 2 Ave.) from November 21–August 2021. For additional/interactive content please visit: or the artist’s website:

Author: Lori Ann Doyon

Managing editor, head writer, and lead photographer of Greenline | North Brooklyn News since October 2014. Resident of Williamsburg, Brooklyn since 1990.

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