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Artist Uses 100,000 Knives to Raise Awareness of Knife Violence

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British artist Alfie Bradley, in cooperation with the British Ironwork Centre, created the Knife Angel sculpture to generate buzz and make the public more aware of the issue of knife crime.

knife angel

Thalmaray.co

The project seeks the cooperation of police departments by asking the authorities to donate confiscated knives as material for the sculpture. Around 41 police departments reportedly helped with the project and handed over the knives they retrieved during arrests and confiscations.

knife violence

Alfie Bradley

The 27-foot “Knife Angel” was created using 100,000 knives and took two years to complete. The sculpture serves as a tribute to those who have lost their lives because of knife violence and to their families who were left grieving behind.

“It shows you the amount of knives out there, the damage it causes families, it’s just a very emotional piece,” artist Bradley told BBC.

knife angel

Shropshire Star

The organizers and the artist behind the massive and controversial art piece worked closely with many families who have directly affected by knife crime violence as they have the most powerful voice.

The knives that serve as feathers on the angel sculpture’s wings contain engraved “messages of love and remembrance not only from families but also perpetrators who have seen the error of their ways and now fight knife crime and violence” according to Ironwork.

“It’s by far the hardest part of the job because there are a lot of tears involved, a lot of emotions, and you end up following a lot of the stories,” said Bradley.

knife angel

Shropshire Star

The team behind the sculpture is currently asking for support to their petition to “allow the Knife Angel to take its rightful place on the fourth plinth of Trafalgar Square” saying they “need him to be seen by the world.”

The British Ironwork Centre stressed that the statue was created in order to “focus a spotlight on this national embarrassment”, adding that “both our government and our educational system need to accept there’s far more to be done.”

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