The 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge
Designed by renowned Canadian sculptor Walter Seymour Allward in 1921, the Canadian National Vimy Memorial’s twin pylons represent Canada and France, and pay tribute to the 3,598 Canadians who died there, as well the 7,000 Canadians that were injured during battle.
Canadian photojournalist Racheal McCaig first visited the memorial—located in Givenchy-en-Gohelle—in 2014 with her children, and the experience made a lasting impact. “The sense of Canadian pride really hits you, but also the sense of tragedy and what those soldiers sacrificed,” she says. Now, a series of photographs she captured in 2016 will be exhibited in Canada and France as part of the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge on April 9.
Her exhibit, Je Me Souviens: Vimy 100, will showcase 18 photographs of the monument and its surrounding trenches, and is an integral part of the official ceremony marking the centenary. Starting in June, McCaig’s exhibit will tour select cities in Canada. “It’s about giving Canadians the chance to see what we accomplished at Vimy Ridge,” says McCaig. “Whether or not you agree with why Canada fought, the reason our opinion and freedom exist today is because we did fight.” Here’s a sneak peek of McCaig’s photography, which will have you seeing the iconic image on the back of our $20 bill in a whole new light.