Carnet de Poilu
Their life told to children by Renefer
Ed. Albin-Michel, 2013
the course of a conversation with the artist's grandson, the latter
showed me this sketchbook. That was the first time it had ever been
taken out of the family archives.
The sketchbook is both restrained and sensitive,bearing witness to the
life of the poilus,
the hairy guys, at the ordinary french soldiers were called in World
It refrains from depicting of the brutality of the battle. While these
drawings were meant for child on the ideal of death is unmentioned,
still it makes itself felt. Now, 100 years later,
this sketchbook, Carnet de Poilu, with its very special
light touch, lets us revisit the daily life of the poilus, the horror
of the battlefield and the suffering of the civilians. Above all, it
provides a timeless reminder of the importance of duty and memory.
The sketchbook's final "Don't forget me" is adresses not only to Renefer's daughter but to future generations as well, to all children, and therefore to us,the children, the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the "sacrified generation".
"Since I can't tell you stories like I used to, I'll try to amuse you by writing about the funny things your papa sees here.
You've probably figured out that I'am going to tell you about soldiers!
Some of them are really funny. There were two going down the road.
They were both fathers, but the one with beard might have been a grandfather, too.
A grandfather going off the war ? That's a pretty sight !
You can be sure he's still in good condition and those Boches better not hurt his grandchildren ! You bet !"
Ed. Albin Michel
Original Booklet in fac-simile
Format : 162 x 104 cm
96 colored pages, 80 illustrations.
The booklet on video