• Welcome to the website of the French Institute of South Africa!

  • Bienvenue sur le site de l'Institut Français d'Afrique du Sud !

Paul Emmanuel's Return to Thiepval: Imprinting and Erasing Memories of the First World War

Tuesday 11 November at 18:00 for 18:30
Alliance française of Johannesburg 

paul emmanuel cropped

On the occasion of the commemoration of the end of the First World War, South African artist Paul Emmanuel presents his project The Lost Men France, accompanied by Bill Nasson’s historical contribution.

This evening will see the launch of From the trenches of the Marne to the hills of Rwanda: reflections on 100 years of war, genocide and mass violence, a series of featured events to commemorate World War I, World War II and the Rwandan Genocide organised by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, the Johannesburg Holocaust & Genocide Centre, the Goethe-Institut, the French Institute and the Alliance française.

RSVP This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / 011 646 11 69 / William Kazadi 
Venue: Alliance française of Johannesburg, 17, Lower Park Drive, Parkview


Paul Emmanuel is a well known South African artist leaving in Johannesburg. He was selected as the 2011 Featured Artist with his solo exhibition TRANSITIONS MULTIPLES for the FNB Joburg Art Fair, South Africa & in 2012 he was granted the Institut Français Visas Pour la Creation research residency, Paris, France.

Bill Nasson is Professor in the History Department of the Stellenbosch University. He specialises in the history of war and society and his works have been translated to Dutch, German, French and Italian. His new book, World War I and the People of South Africa is due in November this year.

About Lost Men France

The Lost Men France by contemporary South African artist Paul Emmanuel is the third phase of an ongoing international public art project engaging concepts of memory and collective grief. Located alongside the Thiepval Memorial, near where thousands of South African servicemen died alongside the Allies, it is an intervention in the Somme Circuit of Remembrance.

An anti-monument, it does not glorify war but asks questions about masculinity and vulnerability. It questions the exclusion of certain people in traditional memorials – in particular black South African servicemen. A three hundred metre road of silk banners bear the names of French, German, South African and Allied servicemen who fell on the Western Front. The names were photographed after being pressed into the artist’s body, without reference to rank, nationality or ethnicity.

These banners are hung in the landscape and left to the wind.




Arts & Culture - Exhibitions & Workshops

    Exhibitions & Workshops

    Ubuhle Bendalo - An Urban Art Residency

    UBUHLE BENDALO - AN URBAN ART RESIDENCY The French Institute of South Africa is proud to announce the first edition of Ubuhle Bendalo, an urban art residency devoted to street art in all its forms, curated by Breeze Yoko. Street artists Sitou Matthia and Doudou' Style are coming all the way from… Read more
  • InsideOutSoweto Banner
    Exhibitions & Workshops

    Inside Out Soweto - A street art project

    A STREET ART PROJECT “Can art change the world?Maybe we should change the question:can art change people's lives?” - JR On March 2, 2011, JR, French artist, won the TED prize at the TED Conference in Long Beach, California, and called for the creation of a global participatory art project with the… Read more
  • Exhibitions & Workshops

    Five Photographers. A tribute to David Goldblatt

    David Goldblatt, South Africa's iconic documentary photographer has devoted his photography career to observe and document his country for over 60 years.Globally known, respected and acclaimed for his work, Goldblatt has chosen four photographers from the region whose work he admires, to be… Read more

Follow us:


Join the Culture Newsletter


Tel. (+27) 11 403 0458
Fax. (+27) 11 403 0465