Artist Makes Music From Drug War Weapons

By Ben Feuerherd 03/05/13

Mexican artist Pedro Reyes transforms 6,700 used firearms into musical instruments.

Pedro Reyes is an artist from Mexico City.
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Mexican artist Pedro Reyes has taken confiscated drug war weapons and recreated them into musical instruments, in an attempt to "transform an agent of death into an agent of life." Reyes used 6,700 firearms turned over to him by the Mexican government in Ciudad Juarez, once the murder capitol of the world due to drug-related violence. The musical project, called "imagine" (below), includes cymbals made from pistols, and a marimba formed out of shot gun barrels. "Weapons make people not want to go out into the street, hide and we have experienced an abandonment of public spaces in Mexico which makes our cities very unsafe," says Reyes. "The same transformation we are making with these weapons is a transformation we would like to see in society." "Imagine" is a continuation of another art piece called "Palas por Pistolas," where decommissioned firearms were used to make shovels and plant trees.

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Benjamin Feuerherd is a city reporter at the New York Post. He has previously worked for The Daily Beast and NBC. You can find him on Linkedin and Twitter