The International Museum of the Red Cross and Red Crescent in Geneva was founded in 1988 to document the history and activities of these two humanitarian agencies. A quotation from Dostoyevsky welcomes the public: Everyone is responsible for everyone and for everything. This expresses the mission of the museum, to present humanitarian action free of moral judgment on the source of conflict. The object most emblematic of this mission is the Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field. Its adoption in 1864 by 12 international signatories, including the United States, is both the founding act of the Red Cross and the first international provision to attempt, as far as is possible, to make war less cruel by recognizing the dignity of human beings and the neutrality of the war wounded. The Swiss flag – a red cross against a white field – was chosen as an emblem of the Convention to honor the host country. To this day, the Red Cross is a symbol of protection and neutrality, recognized the world over.
In 2002 Goppion was selected to make a single, highly specialized case to display the original Geneva Convention, which the Museum had obtained in trust from the Swiss Government.
Given the delicate nature and symbolic importance of the manuscript, the case had to provide tightly regulated conservation conditions and high security while affording visitors the ability to easily view and read the entire 6- page document.
To meet the exacting requirements of displaying this document, Goppion created a display case with engineering characteristics similar to those we employed for the construction of the cases for the British Crown Jewels but with different aesthetics. An innovative fiber-optic lighting system illuminates the document while protecting it from the heat damage incandescent lighting would incur.
Display units: 1; dimensions: l = 100 cm; p = 10 cm; h = 200 cm