Anti-War, Pro-Bed

Picketing, boycotts, sit-ins, marching… Protests can take many forms, although most, with the exception of the bumper sticker, involve some sort of action-oriented defiance. In 1969, however, Yoko Ono and John Lennon proved yet another advantage of being famous. While the rest of us risked rubber bullets and pepper spray to the face, Lennon taught us that if you’re a Beatle, you don’t have to get out of bed.

Knowing their marriage would garner a lot of publicity, the couple invited the media along for their Amsterdam honeymoon. Everyone expected them to have sex for the cameras, but instead it turned into the famous week-long “Bed-In” for peace, which was followed by another in Montreal a few months later. Photographer Gerry Deiter, on assignment for Life magazine at the time, was the only photographer to document all eight days of the Montreal Bed-In. However, when the story and photos never ran, Deiter stored the negatives away for the next 35 years. He dusted them off after September 11, though, when he felt compelled to reintroduce the world to Lennon and Ono’s message of peace. Old School Square Cultural Center (51 N. Swinton Avenue, Delray Beach) celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Bed-In with the traveling award-winning Deiter exhibit “Give Peace a Chance: John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Bed-In for Peace.” The exhibit — open Monday through Wednesday — runs through October 11 and includes 30 large format photographs by Deiter as well as contributor interviews, music, memorabilia, screenings of Give Peace a Song, Hard Day’s Night, and Let It Be, and an October 9 bash for what would have been Lennon’s 69th birthday. Suggested donation is $2. Call 561-243-7922, or visit
Mon., Oct. 5, 7 p.m.; Oct. 6-11, noon, 2009

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