When Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov accept the Nobel Peace Prize in December, they will receive a gold medal and diploma adorned by a piece of art signed by one of Norway’s most acclaimed artists, Håkon Bleken. 

The work of art that adorms this year’s Nobel diploma  was revealed by the Chair of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, Berit Reiss-Andersen, at the Nobel Peace Center, the day after the announcement of the Nobel Peace Prize 2021. The artist Håkon Bleken was present. 

“An honorable mission that became even more honorable by the fact that the prize was awarded to these two”, said Håkon Bleken.

The 92 year old artist was never in doubt when the Norwegian Nobel Committee asked him to create the artwork for this years’ Nobel diploma. To be able to make the diploma again, like he did in 1992, was both fun and rewarding, he said.

“If I had known the names of the laureates, I would probably have done it differently”, he said. “There are few people I admire more than these two. This year's prize goes to two people who move me deeply, because freedom of speech is so important in our time.”

The first  diploma, used from 1901 until 1969, was a lithography designed by Gerhard Munthe. In 1991 it was decided that a new, unique diploma would be presented each year, and that this would be adorned by an original work of art commissioned from a contemporary Norwegian artist. The previous three years, Vanessa Baird created the artwork for the diplomas.