January 3, 2019
January 3, 2019



Samuel Liebewert first went to Germany before he arrived in France. During World War II, he was interned at the Camp des Milles near Aix-en-Provence. In this camp, which was a former brick factory, most prisoners were foreigners of German origin, many of them artists and political refugees exiled in France. On September 7, 1942, he was deported on convoy number 29. He was murdered by the Nazis.

“The paintings in the Camp des Milles’ refectory were produced by the interned artists. All four walls were painted. On the east-facing wall, one can see Harvest and Grape Harvest on either side of 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.” (Monique Pomey, catalogue of the exhibition “Painters at Camp des Milles, September 1939-Summer 1941,” Galerie d’art Espace 13, Aix-en- Provence, Editions Actes Sud, 1997.)