By transfiguring the image of a tragic news event, the artist draws an absolute vision of the destiny of all migrants in the world and across history. Through his application of black chalk and the simplification of line, the image of this sea crossing of anonymous people crammed in a boat concentrates all the violence of this human tragedy. The Lampedusa series deliberately refers to Gericault’s famous Radeau de la méduse, which itself relates to an event that had a tremendous political and social impact at the time. Abdessemed assumes and renews this legacy. With the same force, he confronts us with a current event, whilst evoking an eternal human drama.
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