As the 40th anniversary of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s infamous honeymoon approaches the artist has released an appeal message to Beatles fans urging them to recreate their ‘Bed In for world peace.’
As John took up with the avant grade performance artist in 1969 he turned away from his Fab Four image and rejoiced in the surrealist projects he undertook with his Japanese wife.
The original Bed In took place at the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel from March 25-31, 1969, and saw Lennon and Ono demonstrate against the Vietnam War by inviting journalists to witness their honeymoon celebrations at the hotel and interview them without about peace.
Journalists and TV crews descended in their cosy cuddle sessions expecting the famous nudists to make love in front of the cameras only to be met by appeals for people to ‘stay in bed and grow their hair for peace.’
John said at the time that they were trying to sell peace to the world and again invited scorn by comparing the idea behind the stunt to Jesus Christ, explaining that if Christ was alive now he would use the modern miracle of communication.
He said: “If you want to sell peace, you’ve got to sell it like soap or Coca Cola.
“We Want Christ to win. We’re trying to make Christ’s message contemporary. What would he have done if he’d had advertisement, records, films, TV and newspapers?
“Christ made miracles to tell his message. well the miracle today is communications, so lets use it.”
They were largely ridiculed by the media at the time, who said that Yoko had gone to his head, which in turn resulted in the recording of The Ballad Of John And Yoko and a number one hit for The Beatles.
The Daily Mirror reported: “A not inconsiderable artistic talent has completely gone off his rocker.”
Although their peaceful demonstrations were mocked at the time they are now seen as pioneering and making way for the lauded efforts of Bono and Bob Geldoff.
Another week-long Bed in protest took place at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal from May 26 – June 2.
Posting on Imaginepeace.com, Ono asked fans to recreate the famous demonstrations and send in their pictures or stories to the website for publication.