A series of Olivier Kugler’s Syrian refugee illustrations is being displayed at the British Museum this month following two and a half years he spent uncovering multiple refugee journeys to the Greek island of Kos from Turkey.
The London-based German artist produced six pencil drawings with text after being commissioned by Médecins Sans Frontières (aka Doctors Without Borders). They are on display at the museum’s West Foyer until the end of June.
The prints reveal the reality of two worlds – tourists and refugees – suddenly exposed to each other.
“You could see the refugees camping along the yacht marina and the main tourist destinations,” Olivier says.
“Many of the women were wearing head scarves and long black coats and then literally centimetres away from them you could see Scandinavian, Dutch and British tourists walking or cycling past them, many of them only wearing bikinis and Speedos.
“I was surprised how both worlds tried to ignore the other.”