At dusk, all the lights on, sparkling like a haute couture gown, NORMANDIE conquers the ocean. The lifeboats are ochre-colored, and it’s 1939, August 19th to be precise. This is the last time the ship crosses the Atlantic in a carefree manner: passengers are dancing and reveling in the Café Grill, despite the impending storm of World War II. The world’s most beautiful ocean liner is depicted in this illustration as a dream of light, a lighthouse of the free world facing a dark fate.

This highly detailed work of art was published in the book Normandie, un rêve français by Adrien MOTEL, Éditions Place des Victoires and is already part of private collections in France, Switzerland, in the United Kingdom, in the United States, and even in Australia. The copy numbered 07/15 sails aboard the brand-new French ship RENAISSANCE owned by the Compagnie Française de Croisière.

Today, the dream goes on, and NORMANDIE stands as a jewel of naval architecture. Her destiny still fascinate the enthusiast community and her pure lines continue to inspire naval architects more than 90 years after her launch.