As the international community continues to mourn last week’s attacks on Beirut and Paris, a simple image from French illustrator Jean Jullien has quickly gone viral as a unifying symbol of peace.
Rocked by the vicious attacks that left over 129 people dead and 352 injured in France alone, the 32-year-old graphic designer soon got to work; using Instagram and Twitter to share his creation: a combination of the international symbol of peace and the Eiffel Tower.
“It was the most spontaneous thing. I heard the news on the radio, and I had this heartfelt reaction. I wanted to draw something that could symbolize peace and solidarity, and I wanted something with the context of Paris,” said Jullien to CNN.
Since then the imagery has exploded, landing on everything from shirts to artwork made in honor of the victims.
Jullien explained, “The response has been overwhelming — especially since I didn’t have any control over it. But I can’t feel pride or happiness because it is such a dark time. It’s undesired exposure. A horrible moment. But, I’m just somehow glad people made use of it.”
He added,“Words can sometimes be difficult to translate. I think the simpler, the better, the more universally understood it can be…It really shows that this is how we communicate not just as humans, but as a society. It can break down barriers.”
Currently running a gallery in London, you can check out more of Jullien’s work here.