The CND symbol – one of the world’s most widely known – was designed in 1958 by Gerald Holtom, a professional designer and artist and a graduate of the Royal College of Art. He had been invited to design artwork for use on the first Aldermaston March. He showed his preliminary sketches to a DAC meeting in February 1958 at the Peace News offices in North London. On Good Friday in Trafalgar Square, where the march began, the symbol first appeared in public.
Gerald, a conscientious objector, later explained the genesis of his idea: ‘I was in despair. Deep despair. I drew myself: the representative of an individual in despair, with hands palm outstretched outwards and downwards in the manner of Goya’s peasant before the firing squad. I formalised the drawing into a line and put a circle round it.’
Gerald’s original, first sketches are now on display as part of the Commonweal Collection in Bradford; while the symbol continues to be used as shorthand for peace and hope.
What is 60 faces of CND?
Founded in 1958 at the height of the Cold War, CND has been a powerful collective voice against the dangers of nuclear weapons.
CND’s greatest strength has always been its members.
Here we take a look at 60 Faces of CND,
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