The Destiny of Men


“Modern Man can be seen as a post-apocalyptic angel, at once Messenger and Punk Demiurge.”

The Exhibition

“Modern Man can be seen as a post-apocalyptic angel,
at once Messenger and Punk Demiurge.”

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Couvent des Cordeliers, Paris

The photographer and plastic artist, Gérard Rancinan, and the author, Caroline Gaudriault, have, for many years compared their views on the times in which they live. After working together on several different projects, they deliver their new vision of society and its contemporaries with The Destiny of Men.

Nothing escapes its own nature, however deviant and cruel that nature may be. But everyone can surpass it. It is this desire to go further and higher that Man owes his historical evolution. In a confrontation with himself, half-angel, half-warrior, he is driven forward by his immaterial essence, his thought, his curiosity.

From Byzantium to Giotto and, later, Michelangelo, the anthropomorphic representation of the angel transposes humanity’s earliest desires and its frenzied quest for transcendence.

The Destiny of Men, with its monumental photographs and its calligraphic texts, is a an artistic and philosophical commentary on Modern Man, who appears as post-apocalyptic angel, at once a Messenger of the need for transmission and a fallen Punk Demiurge.



Couvent des Cordeliers, Paris, France, from june 11th to 14th 2015


Urban Spree, Berlin, Germany, 2016

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Académie des Beaux Art, Firenze, Italy, 2016

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The Destiny Of Men

The Guide - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The Battle - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The Warrior - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

Land of men - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

Bird of Life - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The Annunciation - 2015 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

Market scene - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The party is over - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The feast of crumbs - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The Messenger - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

The feast of crumbs - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I

Birth of the Angel - 2014 - The Destiny Of Men Part I


“Modern Man is both a Messenger of a desire to transmit, and a Punk Demiurge, characterized by a destructive instinct”.

The photographer-plastic artist, Gérard Rancinan, and the author, Caroline Gaudriault, have long compared notes on their era, expressing their respective visions of society and its contemporaries by means of a scenographic artistic oeuvre that reflects their uninterrupted discussion. Here, once again, photography and the written word engage in a dialogue in The Destiny of Men, Parts I and II, their latest project.

With its monumental photographs and its calligraphic installation The Destiny of Men, Part I, is an artistic and allegorical proposition on Modern Man, both a Messenger of a desire to transmit, and a Punk Demiurge, characterized by a destructive instinct.

Nothing escapes its nature, however cruel and deviant it might be. Yet, Man owes his historical evolution to his desire to elevate and transcend himself. In this confrontation with himself, half-angel, half-warrior, he seems to be motivated – or saved – by his immaterial side, his thought and his curiosity.

The Destiny of Men is inscribed in the academic tradition of the anthropomorphic representation of angels, from Byzantium to Giotto and Michelangelo. It transposes, in a highly contemporary manner, Humanity’s earliest desires onto a universal and frenzied quest for self-transcendence.

The authors

Gérard Rancinan

Frenchman Gérard Rancinan is an internationally recognized artist and photographer. His photographic works are included in great contemporary art collections and displayed in prestigious museums the world over. A wakeful witness of the metamorphoses undergone by humanity, Rancinan observes the world and delivers an uncompromising critique of the humours of the “Modern”.
Through his protean photography, in which form and content are always linked, Rancinan seeks to translate the questions attached to the deviances and contradictions of society. He never gives absolution, and, in spite of the occasional cruelty of his gaze, he never fails to show everything.
“Free thinker” is assuredly the only title to which he lays claim and to which he dedicates his life and work.
He is known not only for the relevance of his oeuvre, but also for the monumental size of his photographic works.
Rancinan is an Officier des Arts et Lettres and has won, among other things, six World Press awards.

His work has been featured in exhibitions at, among other places, the National Portrait Gallery in London; the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco; the Shanghai Himalayas Museum; the Louvre Lens, France; the Fondation Pinault de Dinard, France; the Oscar Niemayer Museum, Curitiba, Brazil; the Muséé des Arts et Métiers, Paris; the Danubiana Meulensteen Art Museum, Bratislava; and the Palais de Tokyo in Paris.


Caroline Gaudriault

Author, designer of the calligraphic installation

Born in Paris, Caroline Gaudriault is the author of around a dozen books translated into English, and even Chinese. Long an independent journalist, she has worked with a series of international magazines. Her reportages have taken her around the world, where she has been able to observe human beings confronted by their modernity and to analyze its consequences.

She has conducted wide-ranging interviews with the leading thinkers of the day, interviews that have helped her develop her thought and which inform her detailed analyses of our humanity. Thus, the major figures of modern thought are happy to participate in her personal quest. The American political scientist and philosopher Francis Fukuyama was a major contributor to her most recent book.

She exhibits her texts in calligraphic installations, gradually adding the languages of the countries in which the host museums are located.


A Small Man in a Big World, Editions Paradox and Guangxi Normal University Press Group, 2014, with Francis Fukuyama

The Trilogy of the Moderns

Metamorphoses, Part 1, Editions Paradox, 2012
Hypotheses, Part 2, Editions Paradox, 2011
Wonderful World, Part 3, Editions Biro, 2009

The Photographer, Edition de la Martinière and Abrams, 2008, by Caroline Gaudriault and Gérard Rancinan

Urban Jungle, Edition de la Martinière, 2000, by Gérard Rancinan, with a preface by Caroline Gaudriault


2000 to 2016

Base sous-marine, Bordeaux, France, 2016
Exhibition “ Scarcity of Miracle”

Urban Spree, Berlin, Germany, 2016
Exhibition “The Destiny of Men” Parts I & II

Montresso Art Foundation, Jardin Rouge, Marrakech, Morocco, 2016
Exhibition “Rancinan in Morocco” – inaugural exhibition for the museum of the Montresso Art Foundation

Kasteel van Gaasbeek, Brussels, Belgium, 2016
Collective Exhibition “Divine Decadence”, an exhibition in collaboration with Mechelen-based theatre group Abattoir Fermé, inspired by the book A Rebours by Joris-Karl Huysmans

Accademia delle Arti del Disegno, Firenze, Italy, 2016
Exhibition “The Destiny of Men”, in collaboration with the author Caroline Gaudriault

Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille, Lille, France, from september 2015 to january 2016
Collective Exhibition - « Joie de Vivre »
Curator: Bruno Girveau

National Portrait Gallery, London, UK, 2015
Permanent Collection - « Barry McGuigan »
Curator : Paul Ardenne

Couvent des Cordeliers, Paris, France, happening from june 11 to june 14, 2015
Solo exhibition – « The Destiny of Men »
Curator : Paul Ardenne

Oceanographic Museum of Monaco, Monaco, april – june 2015-09-15
Solo exhibition – « Another Day on Earth »

Museum of Huelva, Spain, 2015
« The Trilogy of the Moderns »

Himalayas Art Contemporary Museum, Shanghai, China, sept-nov 2014
Solo exhibition - « The Trilogy of the Moderns »
50th anniversary for diplomatic relations betwwen France and China

Sinan Mansions, Shanghai, China, sept-nov 2014
Solo exhibition - « A Small Man in a Big World »

The Louvre Lens Museum, Lens, France, 2013 - 2018
« The liberty unveiled»

Quai d’Orsay, Ministery of Foreign affairs, Paris, France, 2013 - 2015
« Batman Family Boys»

Pinault Foundation and the city of Dinard, France, june - sept 2014
Collective exhibition with Jeff Koons, Andres Serrano, Subodh Gupta, Joel-Peter Witkin
Presentation of « the big supper »
Curator : Jean-Jacques Aillagon

Museo Oscar Niemeyer, Curitiba, Brazil, june 2014
Collective exhibition - « A Wonderful World ».

Art Contemporary Museum (MAC) of Lyon, France, feb-april 2014
Collective exhibition - « Moto Poétique ».
Curator : Paul Ardenne

Arts et Métiers Museum, Paris, France, oct - nov 2013
Solo exhibition - « The feast of Barbarians »

Danubiana Contemporary Art Museum of Bratislava, Slovakia, may– sept 2013
Solo exhibition - « The Trilogy of the Moderns »
Curator : Vincent Polakovic

Contemporary Art Museum Les Abattoirs of Toulouse, France, sept - oct 2012
Printemps de Septembre 2012 « L’Histoire est à moi ! »
Curator: Paul Ardenne
Collective exhibition with Anselm Kiefer, Pierre&Gilles, Mounir Fatmi

Londonewcastle Project Space, Shoreditch, London, Great Britain, june 2012
« Wonderful World »

Triennale di Milano, Milan, Italy, may 2012
Solo exhibition - « The Trilogy of the Moderns »
Curator : Claudio De Albertis

Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, La Haye, Holland, 2011
Reflex Miniature Museum – exposition collective avec Damien Hirst- George Baselitz – Yayoi Kusama- Roy Lichtenstein -

Chapelle Saint-Sauveur, Paris/Issy les Moulineaux, France, 2011
Solo exhibition - « Hypothèses »

The Louvre bookstore Paris, France, 2010
« Metamorphosis »

Galerie Rudolfinum, Musée des Arts Décoratifs of Praha, Czech Republic 2010
Exposition collective en compagnie de Damien Hirst, Andres Serrano, Cindy Sherman
« Decadence Now »

Barbizon, France, 2010
Collectiv exhibition with Combas, Erro, Klasen, Monory
« 150 artists for the 150 years of the Angelus of Millet»

Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France, nov-dec 2009
Solo exhibition - « Métamorphosis »
Curator : Marc-Olivier Wahler

Palazzio delle Esposizioni, Roma, Italy, may - july 2009
Exposition personnelle - « Le Photographe »

Palais de Tokyo, Paris, 2008
Solo exhibition - « The Photographer »

Triennale Bovisa, Milano, Italy, july - sept 2008
Solo exhibition - « La Trilogie du Sacré Sauvage »

Barcelona Art Contemporary Museum (MACBA), Spain, 2007
Collectiv exhibition

Espace Pierre Cardin Paris, France, 2000
Solo exhibition - « Urban Jungle »

Press & Media

 Paris Match
[Samedi 6 juin 2015]

"Ce sont des anges punks ! Des humains d’aujourd’hui qui s’inventent des ailes pour ne pas voir une réalité trop dure"
Elisabeth Couturier

Rancinan chasse le surnaturel - ParisMatch


[Vendredi 4 mars 2016]

Angeli punk con la cresta e le borchie, attovagliati scompostamente in una bizzarra Ultima Cena e poi angeli con ali da condor e pantaloni piumati, il petto nudo scolpito, il volto beffardo. È fatto così il Paradiso, se ti chiami Gérard Rancinan.
Francesca Amè

Il destino degli uomini: gli angeli dark e punk di Rancinan


 ZIGZAG Journal
[Juin 2016]

Des anges ont été aperçus sur Terre. Ce phénomène exceptionnel et tout à fait intriguant aurait dû créer une panique mondiale, orchestrée et amplifiée par l’affolement des médias internationaux. … Une rumeur court que les anges pourraient se donner rendez-vous à Paris, au Couvent des Cordeliers.

le destin des Hommes aux Couvent des Cordeliers


[Editions de septembre et novembre 2015]

Comme un tourbillon poétique, les images et les mots se mêlent et s’entremêlent pour témoigner et offrir un temps de réflexion sur cette société enchaînée au spectacle.
Crapaud Mademoiselle

Art must be beautiful RANCINAN - GAUDRIAULT


[Mardi 10 mai 2016]

Winged bodies enveloped in ecstacy, anguish or some exhilarating mix between: The Destiny of Men looks at extremes of emotion through dark and polished photographs at Urban Spree …

Shooting people, not angels


[Mardi 10 mai 2016]

The French contemporary photographer and visual artist has teamed up with the author Caroline Gaudriault to complete a series of large-scale photographs envisioned as post-apocalyptic “tableaux vivants”. For Gerard Rancinan and Caroline Gaudriault, this exhibition is a perfect opportunity for these photographs to become incarnated, and it is a perfect community in which his works can blend perfectly with the context and the situation they are in, adding a new dimension to them.



Gérard Rancinan and Caroline Gaudriault
are represented worldwide by :

Fine Art Cube
+33 (0) 1 56 20 15 40