Global Leonardo Bridge Project
The Oslo Leonardo Bridge Project opened October 31, 2001, one month after 9/11. In those tense days, the world struggled to come to terms with the events in New York. For many, the story, symbolism and beauty of the Leonardo Bridge represented a new metaphor for the 21st century - a graceful yet powerful structure that, like a piece of music, could be reinterpreted through the artistic vision or artisans around the world.
The global press responded positively to the construction of the Oslo Bridge with stories on CNN, NPR, the Discovery Channel and the National Geographic Channel. Email and letters came into the Leonardo Bridge Project team with encouragement and ideas for building the bridge in communities around the world.
Vebjørn Sand’s original vision for the project was a bridge on every continent. With new global realities, the bridge came to symbolize the power of art to change the realm of ideas. It represented our shared global civilization and the possibilities of literally building the bridges politicians and diplomats talk about.
Numerous projects have been explored since 2002, when the global Leonardo Bridge Project officially organized. Many of the projects have been instructive, and even amusing, failures. The city council for Des Moines, Iowa, for example, in considering the bridge for the renovation of the Iowa statehouse campus, rejected the design as “too modern” though Leonardo designed it 500 years ago.
People around the world have joined the Leonardo Bridge Project team in working for projects in Texas, Florida, France, Turkey, China and Spain. Our hope is that each new project reinforces our mission to honor the artistic legacy of Leonardo da Vinci by representing our human gifts for observation, curiosity and attentive awe toward the natural world. We also hope to have communicated the urgency for building bridges of the more metaphoric kind.
For more information on how you can bring a project to your community please see our Projects page.