Thrones are traditional symbols of immense power – however this Throne of Weapons by artist Cristovao Canhavato (Kester) offers a critical take on the symbol of authority by connecting it with the use of physical force. The regal seat was built entirely out of decommissioned weapons following the end of the Mozambican civil war in 1992. The weapons, including Russian AK-47 rifles, were collected by the organization Transforming Arms into Tools (Transformaçaõ de Armas em Enxadas).
Canhavato’s Throne of Weapons is made up of guns from all over the globe — from North Korea to Eastern Europe. By combining weapons from so many different countries, Kester reflects on the wide reach of the international arms trade. While the throne has been on display in the British Museum since 2002, it remains an impressive work of politcal art, and it represents a significant turning point in Mozambique’s history.
Images courtesy of The British Museum