Migration map

Hrair Sarkissian, 2017
Migration Map
125 x 230 cm

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[R] Hrair Sarkissian's Migration Map (2017) and detail.

[L] Hrair Sarkissian's Migration Map (2017) and detail.

Factum Arte´s collaboration with Hrair Sarkissian has resulted in the production of seven skulls of Northern bald ibises and an aluminium map representing their winter migration from Syria to Ethiopia.

A grayscale map of the Middle East was 3D modelled to represent the relief with a maximum difference in height of 2.5 mm. This relief map was milled into a 6 mm thick aluminium plate with a definition of 300 microns. The migration route was made in LED lights on methacrylate plate, which was affixed to milled aluminium.

Bald ibises were considered extinct from Syria until a colony of seven birds was found in Palmyra in 2002. These seven birds were protected and their annual winter migration to Ethiopia was being monitored until the ISIS invasion of Palmyra. Hrair Sarkissian represents the annual migration route of these seven ibises that were lost or never returned to Palmyra in an elegant metaphor for the current displacement and migration of Syrians.

Detail of Migration Map

The series of ibises and the migration map will be presented at Refusing to Be Still, a contemporary art exhibition organised annually by the Saudi Art Council.

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