A special series by award-winning Belgian photographer Carl De Keyzer captures the Maison Hennessy’s 250-year legacy of transmitting savoir-faire and passion.

In February 2016, the Maison Hennessy proudly announced the arrival of Renaud Fillioux de Gironde, its 8th generation Master Blender. Renaud Fillioux de Gironde is to succeed his uncle, 7th-generation Master Blender Yann Fillioux, following 14 years of apprenticeship. For the occasion, Hennessy revealed Yann Fillioux’s last masterpiece, Hennessy•8, a blend of 8 eaux-de-vie representing 200 years of uninterrupted legacy. 

“Honoring a legacy is about passing on what we do best, the best of what we have in us,” noted Yann Fillioux upon the presentation of Hennessy•8.

The announcement of Renaud Fillioux de Gironde as the Maison Hennessy’s 8th generation Master Blender follows a worldwide celebration of the house’s 250th anniversary. With the passing of the torch, the Maison Hennessy upholds a legacy dating back to 1765 and prepares to open a fresh new chapter in its history. In due course, once he officially assumes his new role as the “Guardian of the Temple”, Renaud Fillioux de Gironde will build on the vision of his predecessors to create Hennessy cognacs of the future, passing along his passion and experience in turn.

“How to become a Master Blender”- a series of portraits by Carl De Keyzer

To commemorate this milestone event, Hennessy commissioned the award-winning Belgian photographer Carl De Keyzer to document key moments in the process of acquiring a Master Blender’s savoir-faire.

Composed around the theme of “How to Become a Master Blender”, this exclusive series of eight black and white portraits shows Yann Fillioux and Renaud Fillioux de Gironde within their work environment. In capturing the two Master Blenders in emblematic places at the Maison Hennessy — from vineyard to cellar and cellar master’s office to the Tasting Committee — Carl De Keyzer offers a glimpse of a hallowed ritual. Above all, the photographer demonstrates the sharing of knowledge and complicity between uncle and nephew, one Master Blender to the other, in a striking and intimate way.

To see the entire photo-story, please download the attachement: Hennessy 8 – Carl De Keyzer – Photo-story


Carl De Keyzer started his career as a freelance photographer in 1982 while supporting himself as a photography instructior at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Ghent. At the same time, his interest in the work of other photographers led him to co-found and co-direct the XYZ-Photography Gallery. He became a member of Magnum Photos in 1994. De Keyzer, who has exhibited his work regularly in European galleries, is the recipient of a large number of awards including the Book Award from the Arles Festival, the W. Eugene Smith Award (1990) and the Kodak Award (1992).


From the French region of Cognac and throughout its 250-year history, Hennessy has proudly perpetuated an exceptional heritage based on adventure, discovery and cultivating the best that nature and man can offer. Hennessy’s longevity and success across five continents reflect the values the Maison has upheld since its creation: the transmission of a unique savoir-faire, the constant (con)quest for innovation, and an unwavering commitment to Creation, Excellence, Legacy, and Sustainable Development. Today, these qualities are the hallmark of a House – a crown jewel in the LVMH Group – that crafts some of the most iconic, prestigious cognacs in the world.

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