diptyque questionnaire: Jean-Pierre Blanc

Jean-Pierre Blanc, photographie de Filep Motwary.

Jean-Pierre Blanc, photographie de Filep Motwary.

The diptyque questionnaire was designed using the same format as the one Proust answered. These thirty four questions aim to reveal a person dear to diptyque, with the interviewee only having to answer questions as he saw fit.

Jean-Pierre Blanc is the founder and director of the International Fashion and Photography Festival held every spring at Villa Noailles in Hyeres. He is also the director of Villa Noailles, a centre for art and architecture that runs exhibitions for the public. It was given a new lease of life by the Festival when it became open to the arts once more, this having been its original mission under modern art patrons Charles and Marie-Laure de Noailles. Founded in 1986, the International Festival of Fashion and Photography runs a competition for first collections – and first photographic exhibitions – which are judged by a prestigious international panel that changes annually. The undeniable global success of this five day event stems from the impassioned and dogged initiative of its founder, whose enthusiasm for and understanding of fashion, sharp eye and inspirational confidence in others led to a space dedicated to creation, respiration and debate for different sectors of the fashion industry in his own hometown.


1. If you were a diptych – God forbid, which images or allegories would you choose for the central (closed) section and for the two interior panels?
A male nude inside
Ile du Levant on the left
Hyeres on the right
Done by Olivier Amsellem

2. Which period of human history – a « distant country » to quote Racine – would you like to visit as an invisible tourist?
The set of Man Ray’s film “Les Mystères du chateau de Dé” (The mysteries of the Castle of Dice) at Saint-Bernard back in 1928

3. Favourite dish?
Sea urchins and grilled lobster on Ile du Levant

4. Favourite scent?
Orange blossom

5. Your Proustian Madeleine…
The smell of honeysuckle and jasmine in springtime in my granny’s garden and biking to Salins School across the dykes on the salt marshes of St Nicolas!

6. What kind of musical instrument/s are you?

7. Most touching creature?

8. Synaesthesia: what combines form, colour, scent and sound for you?
My home at sunrise
The scent of honeysuckle and wisteria
The sound of the sea

9. Which personal characteristic has hurt you?

10. Which fault do you have that you are the most grateful for?

11. To be totally yourself, do you have to have to put yourself last?
Joker. I don’t think so!

12. What’s in your mind at the moment?
Heart and blood.

13. Which activity do you love doing so much you totally lose track of time?

14. Which novel opened up the world for you like a book or made you grow as a person?
All the Jacques Yves Cousteau
The Pagnol books from my childhood
The Sophie Fontanel books

15. Music that is a little slice of heaven for you?
Paradis perdus (Lost Paradises) by Christophe
Le paradis blanc (White Paradise) by Michel Berger
Amoureuse (In Love) by Veronique Sanson

16. Three key films?

Pierrot le fou (Pierrot the Madman) by Jean-Luc Godard
Les Mystères du Chateau de Dé by Man Ray
Soleil (Sunshine) by Pierre Clementi

17. Which painting expresses fragrance the most – in your opinion?
Paul Cezanne’s Mont Sainte Victoire
Roses, pivoines et lys (Roses Peonies and Lilies) by Raoul Dufy

18. Which sculptor and sculpture would you choose for your imaginary museum?
Brancusi’s The Sleeping Muse

19. Who makes the world a better place (well-known or anonymous)?

20. Who inspires you, past or present, real or fictional?
André Malraux
Jacques Lang
Didier Grumbach
Karl Lagerfeld

21. Which question would you like us to ask you?
Do you love life?
What would be your reply?
Yes, with fervour!

22. If you could offer a bunch of flowers to a bird, which flowers would you give and to which bird?
White peonies to the bird of my heart: Marc

23. Is it that bad not to be loved, as long as you love?
To love and be loved!

24. Where do you go to escape the rat race?
Ile du Levant
Enjoying the magnificent views from the bay of Port Man to Port Cros

25. If life’s a dream, which reality would you like to wake up in?

26. Do you have a motto that serves as your guiding light?
To love, help, listen and share

27. Does artistic creativity rule your life?
Via the artists that I exhibit and promote: yes!

28. Presents; sharing; and that lovely expression « making a gift of… »: what do you like to give people?
A listening ear

29. How would you describe your job to talented youngsters to make them want to follow in your footsteps?
Sharing a love for creation: life!

30. What’s craftsmanship in our day and age?
A lot:

31. Putting economic issues and social status aside for a moment, in your opinion how can rare, high quality, creative methods (savoir-faire, finishing details, research etc.) benefit us today?

32. The genie of the lamp grants you three wishes
My family
My love

33. What’s your favourite diptyque fragrance (perfume or candle)?
L’eau de l’eau & Figuier

34. Describe diptyque in a few words?


diptyque is an official partner of the 2016 Hyeres Festival.