Details of the work:
Type of work: Sculpture
Technique: Patinated bronze, lost wax casting
Dimensions: Ø 200 cm h. 270 cm
Le Bois du Cazier, Marcinelle – Belgium
“Où la lampe passe, le mineur doit passer” is a powerful work commissioned to the artist to honor the memory of the miners who died in August 1956 in Marcinelle. The drama of the Bois du Cazier emerged from the womb of the earth gave the artist the idea of creating a bronze sphere of about three meters in diameter, the terrestrial globe, with a large gravina that plunges into his bowels. With its meaning, this creation has a universal reach, well beyond the Marcinelle tragedy: it symbolizes not only the work of the mine, but also this wound that is migration. On the top of the sculpture, next to the small houses of migrants, takes place the house at the foot of a tree that evokes the return to the country.
Marcinelle became today for the Italians of Belgium, more than 300,000 people, the symbol of their suffering and above all the beginning of their integration into the Belgian community.
It is the whole story of the catastrophe and of this migration, that the refurbished site of the “Bois du Cazier” narrates not to forget the lesson of Marcinelle.
The artist’s enthusiasm, his immersion in the Marcinelle site, his attention to the old miners have been at the source of the success of the work “Où la lampe passe, the mineur doit passer” which greatly favors the dutiful work of memory and to sensitize these events that have marked our two nations forever.
Jean-Louis Delaet, Director of the Museum of “Bois du Cazier”.
“Antonio Nocera has grasped, in his great work, the overwhelming charge of the dramatic fire, which pierced the bowels of the terrestrial sphere, and at the same time managed to make – in the long flight of the swallows, free and without frontiers – the sore message , but pervaded with hope and life, which comes from the tragedy of Marcinelle, a message that is good to resume and relaunch today, facing the risk of falling back into ancient nationalisms, provoking unprecedented forms of xenophobia, or experimenting bitter disillusionment. victims, falls at work in a foreign nation of a Europe still to come, calls for a great commitment to a higher Europeanism, attentive to solidarity, capable of integration, bearer of freedom and progress. “
Giorgio Napolitano, President of the Italian Republic.