In the Studio: Lin Evola
In 1992, Evola’s decision to utilize her artistic skills to galvanize the public to take action against needless violence was actualized when she discovered that 1,000 children were being killed each year through the use of illicit guns in the Los Angeles area. It was then that she founded the Peace Angels Project. Using the “swords to ploughshares” model, Evola requests surrendered weapons from communities and countries through law enforcement and government agencies, melts the weapons down and uses the melted metals to cast sculptures which she calls Peace Angels. Simultaneous to the weapons requests, she engages the media to transmit the message that the public should consider how to balance the need for protection against the desire for peace.
As an artist promoting peace, in 2008 and 2010 Evola attended closed meetings at the United Nations in New York City at the Biennial Meeting of States, Small Arms and Light Weapons. In 2012 and 2013 she attended the United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty in the company of 193 international Member States where she bore witness to a global effort to address the issue of illegal arms trafficking among nations. Evola was honored to be the only artist allowed in the 2013 meetings, and in April 2013, history was made as the United Nations General Assembly voted to approve the first international Arms Trade Treaty ever to be adopted in the history of mankind.
Evola is best known for her Renaissance Peace Angel sculpture which was initially created in California in 1994. In the aftermath of the horror that took place in New York City on September 11, 2001, Evola had her thirteen-foot Renaissance Peace Angel immediately transported to Ground Zero to stand outside a 24-hour respite center and food canteen where the rescue and recovery workers who toiled at the devastated World Trade Center came for sustenance. This Peace Angel brought with it the embodiment of humanity’s yearning for peace, even in the face of unspeakable adversity, and in 2013 the Renaissance Peace Angel was accepted by the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City as a permanent part of their collection.
Over decades, Evola has created Peace Angel sculptures which range in height from one to thirteen feet and which reflect specific cultural indicators of regions throughout the world. Discussions are ongoing to create thirty-two-foot Peace Angel monuments, each of which is to be made from 100,000 surrendered weapons. Two of those monuments are likely to stand in high-visibility locations in New York and California.