Tentoonstelling Parijs: The epic of the Suez canal

Civis Mundi Digitaal #55

From the Pharaohs to the 21st century

28 March to 5 August 2018



Starting on 28 March 2018, the Arab World Institute (IMA) will recount one of the most exciting human undertakings in history: the epic of the Suez Canal. From the Pharaohs to Ferdinand de Lesseps, from Napoleon Bonaparte’s plans to nationalisation under Nasser, this extraordinary 4000-year saga is presented in a ground-breaking exhibition bringing together powerful personalities, superhuman challenges, and the critical moments that have marked the singular history of this symbolic location where three continents converge: Asia, Africa, and Europe.


To tell this story is to recount world history and the great civilizations that came together and confronted each other at this nerve centre of trade between peoples, between North and South, East and West. It is also to present the rebirth - political, economic, and cultural - of the world’s oldest state, which was also the first of an Arab world in the making.


Employing a cinematic and immersive approach,the exhibition will plunge visitors into the heart of the 1869 inauguration, then take them back in time through the historical development of this epic construction. Archaeological objects, scale models, photographs, and period films highlight this marathon exhibition that guides visitors through the history of Egypt and the world from the time of the Pharaohs to the most recent extension and parallel construction inaugurated in 2015.



Claude Mollard, exhibition curator

Gilles Gauthier, scientific advisor