Samuel Liebewert

1906 1942
 (Галичина) (Ukraine) 1906 /   (Unknown) 1942

Samuel LIEBEWERT

DROHOBYCZ (GALICIA) 1906 – DEPORTED 1942

Samuel Liebewert first went to Germany before he arrived in France. During the Second World War, he was interned at the Camp des Milles near Marseilles. In this camp, which was a former brickyard, most prisoners were foreigners of German, often artists and political refugees exiled in France. On 7 September 1942, he was deported on convoy number 29. He was murdered by the Nazis.

The paintings at the Camp des Milles’ refectory were produced by the interned artists. All four walls were painted. On the eastern wall, one can see Harvest and Grape-harvest surrounding on both sides a portrait of Marshal Pétain. All characters have blank faces and are absorbed in their work. The western wall represents the Banquet of the Nations where various peoples indulge in a feast, which parodies the Last Supper. On the northern and southern walls, the artists depicted their dreams of freedom. “If your plates are not filled, may our drawings calm your hunger”. This sentence, painted on the northern wall of the refectory, is evidence of malnutrition, which is also expressed through the prisoners’ fantastical drawings: a boat-shaped ham, a huge cherry jar, sardines trying to escape from their box, exotic fruits, etc.”(After Monique Pomey, catalogue of the exhibition “Painters at Camp des Milles”, September 1939-summer 1941 galerie d’art Espace 13, Aix-en- Provence, éd. Actes Sud, 1997.)