Published on 18 July 2022

Lest We Forget - N’oublions pas - 42 photographs of French Holocaust survivors on the Luxembourg garden fences

To commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Vel d’Hiv Roundup, the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions (Crif) decided to launch an unprecedented project on an exceptional scale to reflect the importance of this tragic event in the history of the Holocaust in France.

Crif chose to showcase on the Luxembourg Garden fences the work of the German-Italian artist Luigi Toscano, by exhibiting 42 portrait photographs of French Holocaust survivors, 42 individual fates linked by a shared history. Helped by the exhibition’s scientific committee, we contacted and met 42 Holocaust survivors from all over France.

We took the Anglo-Saxon definition of a Holocaust survivor: “any Jewish person subjected to Nazi persecution during the Holocaust”.

The photographs on exhibit include survivors of concentration and extermination camps, as well as Jews who were in hiding when they were children, and children of deportees.

Through these unique photographic accounts, the exhibition aims to also reveal the men and women who are no longer with us and whose names continue to pierce the hearts of those who utter them.

You can scan the QR code placed under each photo to read an account of our meeting with each individual photographed and their story in full.

Lest We Forget - N’oublions pas is a Parisian exhibition presented in the heart of the French capital, in order that Paris, the scene of the roundup 80 years ago, becomes, today, the scene of remembrance.

These 42 photographs catch the eye of the passer-by, or is it the other way round? Who is looking at whom? What does one learn about the other? These are the questions that curious passers-by will no doubt ask themselves.

May they look, and may they remember.

-> Access to the gallery of the opening of the exhibition