The creation of ONUART was supported by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, with the backing of private and public partners, following the visit of Their Majesties King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia to Geneva in March 2005. During this visit, the United Nations asked Spain to make an artistic contribution to the Palais des Nations in Geneva. An old, brilliant tradition of collaboration between Spain and multilateral forums resurfaced, its first exponent being the Council Chamber of the former League of Nations, donated in 1936 and illuminated by the murals of José María Sert.
On February 28, 2007, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation and the Director General of the United Nations Office in Geneva signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Madrid to establish the terms and conditions of the Spanish refurbishment of Room XX of the Palais - which would later be dubbed the Human Rights and the Alliance of Civilisations Room.
In addition to refurbishing Room XX, Spain pledged to donate to the United Nations a great work of art to be placed in the huge 1,000 m2 ellipsoidal dome of the Chamber. This work would be carried out by a Spanish contemporary artist.
The ad hoc Advisory Committee established by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, analyzed several proposals submitted by great artists of our country between June and October 2006. The finalists were: "The Footprint of Man" by Manuel Valdés, "Organic Project" by Miquel Barceló, "The X-ray of Pain" by José María Sicilia and "The essentiality" by Frederic Amat.
On 16 November 2006, the Advisory Committee decided to award the commission to Miquel Barceló and his "Organic Project."
This ambitious project was carried out by the ONUART Foundation.