Réhane Favereau recounts 45 years of Mercy Ships in cut-out
Réhane Favereau illustrates 45 years of Mercy Ships
Swiss artist Réhane Favereau has unveiled an exceptional work to celebrate 45 years of Mercy Ships. The original artwork presented as a gift to the founders, Don and Deyon Stephens, is a unique creation recounting the organization’s humanitarian epic journey through remarkably fine cut-outs. The artwork was printed on the finest chocolate given as a gift to all Cargo Day Gala participants Sept 5, 2023.
Years of experience behind this art for Mercy Ships
Réhane Favereau has been exhibiting her works in Christmas markets and other venues internationally for years. Réhane has made the paper-cutting for high profile events including Swiss-Toyota’s 40th anniversary. Her Swiss paper-cutting was presented at the Fujikawa Paper Art Forest Museum and designed a two-tone poya for the Swiss Mint for the commemorative 10 franc coin of 2015 and exhibited in numerous museums since. In 2022, She made large screens for Cartier for their new boutique in Interlaken and a presentation cut-out for Japan’s ANDERSEN 2023 Jumping Hours Rising Sun Edition watch. A talented and gifted artist, she continues to produce beautiful work, including this piece for us.
A talented artist with a big heartWhile still working as a teacher, Réhane discovered her passion for Swiss decoupage (cut-outs) over 26 years ago. Since 2008, she has turned this ancestral technique into an art in its own right. She quickly achieved success, taking part in numerous solo and group exhibitions. For 15 years, her work has been on permanent display in a store in Geneva’s Old Town. Each of her cut-outs tells a story. Her creations, each one unique, bear witness to her undeniable talent, which has won over the hearts of art lovers.
Réhane Favereau’s commitmentAt the request of an acquaintance, Réhane undertook to create a commemorative piece for Mercy Ships. This organization, which she has known for several years, is close to her heart, particularly since her daughter was a volunteer there, recently returning from a mission lasting over 10 months.
The creation of a work dedicated to 45 years of Mercy ShipsDuring the process of creating the work dedicated to Mercy Ships, Réhane immersed herself in deep reflection. The challenge was enormous: to translate 45 years of history into cut-outs. She sought to understand the very essence of Mercy Ships. Inspired by an African proverb: “Alone we go faster, together we go further”, she meticulously crafted a work in which every word, every cut-out, tells the story of Mercy Ships.
Chocolate from the finest Chocolatier
Mercy Ships offered this gift of chocolate from the finest cocoa beans made by Olivier Fuchs, Artisan Chocolatier, that has a molded surface of the beautifully made cut-out Réhane produced for Mercy Ships. In 2005, Olivier Fuchs opened a chocolate shop in Lausanne, where he makes his own creations. He distinguishes himself by working exclusively with exceptional chocolates made from a selection of the finest cocoa beans. With his creative touch and professional experience, he is able to offer original, high-quality products all year round. With the expression of our gratitude, this gift is to thank the shipping community profoundly for your ongoing commitment, generosity and much appreciated help transforming lives together.
The story behind this work
Each of her cut-outs finds its setting in a frame, where meaningful words such as joy, forgiveness, love and hope mingle in symbolic harmony, reflecting the Swiss and American roots of Mercy Ships.
At the center of the design is the iconic Mercy Ships heart. Réhane wondered how best to embody it. The image of the first page of a large book recounting the history of Mercy Ships finally guided her vision.
The silhouettes of the iconic founders, Don and Deyon Stephens, evoke the genesis of this extraordinary humanitarian adventure. They are overlooked by Switzerland, a reminder of the NGO’s origins in Geneva.
The first mission to Togo in 1990 marks the start of an impressive chronology.
The year 1994 was a turning point, with the commissioning of the Caribbean Mercy ship, followed by a major move to Dallas, Texas, where the organization’s headquarters are located today. Madagascar and the west coast of Africa were unforgettable stopovers, as was the launch of the African Mercy in 2007 and the Global Mercy in 2023.
Jeeps criss-cross the land, cities open up to people with various disabilities, all in search of healing. Dentistry, orthopedics, maxillofacial surgery, each operation represents the hope of a better life.
Mothers are reunited with their children, women celebrate their new life after an operation, a daughter discovers the joy of walking, nurses pass on their knowledge. The training and dedication of the volunteers are the pillars of this gigantic work.
Each of Réhane Favereau’s cut-outs become a slice of history, woven from courage and love.
The art of paper-cutting is a gentle blend of research, creativity, talent and generosity.