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3 July 2014

Denis Rouvre / Identities, Intimate territories

For two years now, Denis Rouvre has been travelling around France, from Brittany to the Basque Coast, from the Vendée to Alsace. Exploring towns and countryside, he has caught up in his wake the French people he’s photographed and talked to, creating an installation about identity which mixes images and voices. At a time when globalisation and, simultaneously, the rise in sectarian divisions, are rampant, he asked each of his subjects what it means to be French today. Denis Rouvre encountered hundreds of men and women and saw extraordinary heroes in each of these ordinary people. He posed them against a black background, with lighting inspired by Renaissance portraits, thus conferring upon his subjects the nobility of those who are masters, sometimes without knowing it, of their own realm. He allowed all these French folk, who are usually never heard, to speak, these anonymous people whose bodies, postures, words, at times offensive, at times hesitant, describe a geography on a human scale, a territory where man stands tall, no matter the boundaries.

Natacha Wolinski

Exhibition venue: église Saint-Blaise, Rencontres d’Arles 2014.