Agnès Rosse présente en 2019 une exposition en ligne rassemblant textes et dessins réalisés sous un pont à Sète : www.dans-un-lieu-tenu-secret.com.
Agnès Rosse présente en 2019 une exposition en ligne rassemblant textes et dessins réalisés sous un pont à Sète : www.dans-un-lieu-tenu-secret.com. © Hélène Tilman
Visual arts

Agnès Rosse

I use the reality around me to stick close to the present, embracing the world and honouring it in my own way.

An artist and poet, Agnès Rosse defies the boundaries between artistic disciplines to better capture the diversity of the animal kingdom.

Updated on 04/05/2022

2 min

Agnès Rosse graduated with the highest honours from the  École Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Strasbourg and won the RATP Poetry Grand Prix in 1998. In 2000 she released a children's picture book, Le Cahier des plus (“The Bonus Book”, Éditions Rue du Monde), and a short graphic novel, Image en cage (“Caged image“, Éditions Les Quatre Mers).

The following year, Agnès Rosse participated in an elephant caravan in Laos. Elephants and other large land mammals have featured in her daily artistic practice ever since.

Multidisciplinarity is at the heart of Agnès Rosse’s practice. Her multifaceted work combines text, photographs, drawings, videos and poetic objects: sculpted skate-boards, carved books and pieces of tarmac to which she adds wheels. 

Agnès Rosse is particularly fascinated by the strange relationship between humans and other mammals on the animal’s territory. She also incorporates words and theory into her art to help us understand the richness of the animal world. One of her her recent projects, The Elephant in the Class (“L'Éléphant dans la classe", 2018) combines science, art, history, geography and literature around the central figure of the elephant. In her studio, she organises "artistic residencies” for animals. In 2000, snails became the protagonists of one of her delicate, fantastical videos, entitled “Snail Residency - Summer 2000” (“Résidence d’escargots-été 2000”), and presented at the Galerie Perrotin in Paris the same year.

Residencies and trips to Africa and Asia provide major inspiration for Agnès Rosse’s work. In 2009, she began exploring the elephant building at the Vincennes Zoo, which was closed to the public during renovations. This exploration became a project, The Empty Zoo (“Le Zoo vidé “) (2009-2013), which took her from Paris and its National Museum of Natural History to the Niger Association for the Conservation of Giraffes, the Beauval Zoo, the Laos Centre for the Conservation of the Elephant and the Elephant Hospital in Thailand.

Abroad again, in 2007 Agnès Rosse presented the exhibition "27 Artists for a Project" (“27 artistes pour un projet") at the La Source du Lion workshop in Casablanca (Morocco). She also completed a residency with the Saint-Louis-du-Senegal Institut français in 2015.

Her works remain particularly popular in France, where they have been displayed at La Grande Serre de La Villette (1998-2000), the Musée des Arts Décoratifs (2011), the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie (2012), and more recently at the Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature in Paris (2016).


  • 1970


    Agnès Rosse is born in Paris.

  • 1998


    She wins the RATP Poetry Grand Prix.

  • 2011


    The artist begins a residency at the French National Museum of Natural History.

  • 2016


    Agnès Rosse receives an Institut français Hors Les Murs residency for her project Je n’ai pas de nom.

  • 2018


    Her work L'Éléphant dans la classe is awarded a grant by the Ateliers Médicis as part of its “Creation in Progress” programme.

  • 2019


    Agnès Rosse presents the exhibition Remplacer Artiste par Poète with visual artist, poet and writer Pierre Tilman at the Musée du Vêtements Provençal in Solliès-Ville (France).

The Institut français and the artist

In 2016, Agnès Rosse received an Hors Les Murs residency for her project "Je n’ai pas de nom" (“I Have No Name”), which took place at the Sayabouli Elephant Conservation Centre (Laos). The Hors les murs programme is now known as the Résidences Sur Mesure programme. Find out more about the Résidences Sur Mesure programme.



L'institut français, LAB