Young Maltese artist Anna Calleja has embarked on a new painting series, and it’s all about forgotten casualties from the past and the present.
Calleja kicked off the experimental painting series earlier this November, and has been gradually sharing her work on her Facebook page.
What makes Anna’s work so striking, apart from the vibrant oils she uses to bring popular photos and images back to life, is the mix of figures she had decided to portray.
At one point, she might decide to portray Michelangelo’s metaphorical tortured soul hanging off of Saint Bartholomew’s hands in the Sistine Chapel’s The Last Judgement. Hours later, she’d share a painting of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy who was found lying dead on a beach after he had drowned.
This mix of forgotten and unforgotten casualties really helps put things into perspective, making the audience rethink the value of life based on superficial concepts such as celebrity status of news coverage.
Other people Anna features include Boston marathon massacre victim Jeff Bauman, Che Guevara, Muammar Gaddafi and a nine-year-old Vietnamese girl informally referenced to as the Napalm Girl.
“It takes a lot out of me to look at the images,” Anna said of her work.