In this beautifully illustrated volume, the comic book artist François Schuiten and travel writer Sylvain Tesson take readers on an incredible journey in a not-so-distant future of exponential population growth and record temperatures. Vast stretches of formerly arable land have turned into deserts, and a man and a woman, the new era’s Adam and Eve, are sent on a mission to Mars to explore the possibilities it might offer for human survival.
"In François Schuiten’s own words, “I set off to discover Mars like an explorer, without any preconceived ideas […] I wanted to offer a vision of the planet on a human scale.” Schuiten draws instinctively, with various layers of colors and techniques such acrylic paint, pigment pencils, and oil paint to create the sfumato, avoiding his usual compositional anchors and stark outlines. Thus, the rocks bead with moisture under their brilliant veil of glazing and the huge expanse of sand and gravel becomes a vast plain bristling with ghostlike shadows. The encounter with the writer Sylvain Tesson was a decisive one for Schuiten: “Looking at my illustrations, Sylvain immediately began telling me the story of my book. His ideas put everything in place. They guided me through to the end of the journey.”
The Louis Vuitton Travel Book series sends renowned artists and promising young talents from around the world to destinations previously unknown to them. Through whatever form of expression they choose, and whether exploring remote wildernesses or cities that never sleep, each artist confronts an unfamiliar place sharpened by the surprise of the unknown or stimulated by the pleasure of rediscovery.