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A watercolor of a raft filled with distressed men in a stormy sea.

A somber monochrome watercolor of mayhem and dissent at sea. The depiction of a sinking raft, with one furled and one billowing sail, stretches from one side of the drawing to the other. Great, curved white crested waves break behind and in front of the raft, which is crowded with men in dire straights. Some are naked and some are dressed in tattered clothing. Some, in the foreground, have fallen into the water and cling to the raft by a rope. Others behind them look to the left, some in anger and some in suplication, two are brandishing curved swords. Their eyes are on a clothed man who stands gazing upwards, his left arm curved round the raft's thick mast and in his right hand he holds a broken sword, the other end of which has been plunged into the heart of a naked man who lies, head tipped back, sprawled in front of him. To the left, and behind the standing man, others are closely packed together and also in distress. The sky overhead is dark and stormy, but in the far distance it is white and clear.

Identification and Creation

Object Number
1943.824
People
Théodore Géricault, French (Rouen 1791 - 1824 Paris)