RANCINAN portret | Danubiana}


19. May 2013 - 01. September 2013 Staging design: Marc Thiébault • Music: Laurent Marimbert • Making of: Vincent Tavernier
Project Director: Marion de Baecque • Stylist: Jean-Michel Angays
Assistants: Aurélia Thévenin, Sandra Marie

Delete it all, reinvent it all urgently. Impose the diktat of absolute happiness and universal thought… that is the gospel of the Modern!
In its crazed acceleration, contemporary history is defined, with impeccable gusto, by some of the most remarkable creatures of our rapidly evolving society: the Moderns. They have no other names, no origin, no religious confession. They have no language of their own, nor do they possess a distinct culture providing them with a specific identity. They live without borders, without resentment, and, therefore, without any real issues to concern themselves with. Already immerged in the global, virtual space, they are the premises of the Mankind of tomorrow. Adepts of the “yes” without the “no”, the “good” without the “bad”, the “me” without the “us”, of consensus rather than polemic, they dream of being perfect. So they smudge their errors, create illusions, rejoice in their questionable bliss. Impatient to transform society, the Moderns are candid optimists, more modern than Modernity itself. Proselytes of a consensual, universal style of thought, they are armed with a kind of permanent happiness. The act of pleasing everybody becomes an article of faith. But what if their efforts were to lead to the end of history as we have always known it? The Trilogy of the Moderns is a Revolution in three acts. Between comedy and tragedy, it paints a picture of a confused humanity, blindly groping in the darkness, guided by an absolute desire for generalised happiness. As committed witnesses of the metamorphoses affecting society, the photographer, Gérard Rancinan, and the writer, Caroline Gaudriault, entertain an ongoing dialogue, delivering, each in their own medium, their observations on humanity in its mad progress. In this world premiere, they unveil, after seven years of work, their trilogy in its entirety. The authors are no more able than anyone else to escape their era and its illusions. Victims and profiteers of a modernity full of promises and disappointments, they describe and recount the world with concern, humour and, above all, lucidity.


Born in the Bordeaux region, Gérard Rancinan travels the globe, bearing first hand witness to events of historical importance. With his imperious need to express himself, he delivers startling images of the contemporary world filtered through an ever-evolving aesthetic prism. His original perspective is applied to both real life situations and authentic mises en scène, veritable simulacra of our world. His oeuvre is entirely original. He uses photography as a means of expression and commitment. For Rancinan, photography is above all an instrument of thought, a militant perspective on our era. His approach is recognised by the world of contemporary art. Rancinan eschews conventional codes, preferring instead to travel a road which, while not solitary, is certainly unique. Known throughout the world, Gérard Rancinan’s works are displayed in the most prestigious international galleries and museums and feature in leading collections of contemporary art. Rancinan is a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres.

An independent journalist, Caroline Gaudriault has, for many years, published articles and the writerfeatures in international magazines including Paris Match, The Sunday Times, Stern, and Time, working on major projects around the world. At the same time, she creates portraits of major contemporary figures, with a particular emphasis on artists. As an author, she has always entertained a dialogue with photography. She applies a universalist perspective in her observations of the world around her. Expressing a particular interest in human commitment and historically significant events and movements, she works ceaselessly to preserve traces of memory. In order to further her research into contemporary society, she regularly interviews the leading thinkers of our times.