The circle of United Buddy Bears was created in Berlin in 2002, with the goal to make people think about international understanding and living together in peace. At the time, artists were invited by the ambassadors of all countries recognised by the United Nations to design one of the 2m tall sculptures in the hometown of the Buddy Bears.
In this way, the circle of United Buddy Bears has become a reflection of the cultural diversity in our one world. With a unique design, each bear shows the special characteristics of the country represented by the individual artist to the people who look at the sculptures – the country’s culture, history, people, landscape, economy, sounds and music, and its traditions.
In 2002, the exhibition was shown in Berlin for the first time, next to the landmark of the city, the Brandenburg Gate. Since only one exhibition had been planned in the beginning, many bears were sold at an auction in aid of UNICEF after the exhibition. However, due to the great success of the exhibition, a new show of United Buddy Bears was planned and realised in 2003. In 2004, the colourful group of travelling bears embarked on its tour around the globe. The journey has continued to the present day, and an end is not in sight.