Vessel Gallery London - Contemporary Art-Glass Sculpture and Decorative Art. Exhibitions, Sales and Commissions.


The Arsenal of Democracy




H 69 cm W 32 cm D 32 cm


Handblown & sculpted glass with steel




'The Arsenal of Democracy' is a unique artwork by the American and Swiss artists, Philip Baldwin and Monica Guggisberg, from the Existential Perspectives: Part 2 series of artworks.

Free blown, double overlay & carved glass with bullet blanks and metal stand (which is included in the height).

‘Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.’ Voltaire, Questions sur les miracles, (1765) 

In the artist’s own words;

“We noticed a disparity in tone between the English translation in current circulation and Voltaire’s original from his Questions sur les miracles (1765), and it piqued our curiosity – the English being much more emphatic than the French. Walter Olson from the Cato Institute attributes the translation to Norman Lewis Torrey’s Les Philosophes: The Philosophers of the Enlightenment and Modern Democracy (1961) and adds that if you look back at the context of the Voltaire paragraph with its mention of ‘crimes religieux’ overrunning the world, then Lewis Torrey’s punchier turn of phrase (and reference to the committing of ‘atrocities’) seems justified. (Walter Olson, The Origins of a Warning from Voltaire, Cato Institute, published 20 December 2020: commentary/origins-warning-from-voltaire) “

Baldwin & Guggisberg

The Arsenal of Democracy