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- Art Press. Léa Bismuth
- Le passage des images. Christine Cayol
- Télérama. Chronique d'Olivier Cena
- Le journal des Arts. Article de Julie Estève
- l'Oeil. Article de Philippe Piguet
- Lunettes Rouges
- Portrait-La galerie. Par Émilie Bouvard
- Paris 3ème.
- Inferno. Par Julie Crenn
- Les pas perdus. Par Jérémy Liron
- Backslash. Samedi, c'est galeries
- Art clair. Léa Bismuth
- Blog de Marie Deparis-Yafil
- Le musée privé. Par P.G.Perret
- Claire Taillandier, 2011
- Marguerite Pilven, janvier 2010
- L'imposture temporelle. Par Frédéric Bouglé, juillet 2008
- The imposture of time. By Frédéric Bouglé, july 2008
- Échos. Par Jérémy Liron, novembre 2008
- Images d'images. Par Antoine Reguillon, septembre 2008
By Frédéric Bouglé, july 2008
Director of Creux de l’Enfer.
Claire Tabouret, the imposture of time
Time far-gone, time herewith, time afloat
Flashback and flashforward,
Aquaplaning, elliptical time,
And the fatal straight line, human time.
An entire distant world, absent, almost dying.*
“There are no waves, there is just the sea” Claude Chabrol said ironically about the expression Nouvelle Vague (New Wave). History of art is the sea, the conscience of mankind, alive, never resolute nor appeased. It is an in-between land, difficult to live in. It is an intermediary time and space, a to and fro between the universal, reality and the interior niche of the inner self, outside time. This is why everything an artist undertakes needs knowledge, time, withdrawal, self-effacement. A discipline close to Japanese Ukiyo-e, “from a distant world”, “from a floating world”. If there is an aim in this art, it would be reduced to the bare essential, and, included, would be time, similar to Hokusaï’s “when I am a hundred and ten, I will draw a line and it will be life”.
Whether it be her hut structures, her video works, her canvas paintings or those on sanded-down wood, or whether it be her felt-pen drawings of little strokes, captured frame by frame, one always finds in Claire Tabouret’s intentions, not so much a desire to state truth, to lay down a concept, to convey a message, but rather, by various means, a concern to brush against, flush out, something secret in our own subjective time. It is interesting to see how she plays with the corrosive viatica of light, retinal memory games, using them as a lever for her operations, temporal revelations in motion.
*« La chevelure » from Charles Baudelaire’s Fleurs du mal.
Claire Tabouret invites us inside a hut to view her work. Mario Merz’s Igloo, Marc Dion’s Summer Hut made of planks, Absalon’s white cell, Per Barclay’s glass cabin, Louise Bourgeois’s Cells, so many different examples springing up of the “birthplace physically engraved in us” (Bachelard). Claire Tabouret’s constructions evoke a nomad’s tent, or the hut made out of branches that each of us would have liked to have built at the bottom of the garden: a structure draped with various fabrics in folds, letting the light through here and there.
Erected in 2006 in the covered courtyard of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris, her precarious shelter, informal and unembellished, placed under the glass roof of a vast, ornamental, permanent architecture, ventured a small obscure space, a darkroom, on a human scale. Huts bring us closer to nature, to the wild, standing in opposition to the standard, conventional, domesticated world. They preserve and retain childhood. Inside Claire Tabouret’s huts we do not of course find a bed of dry leaves to take a rest on, but a set-up of low seats resembling wooden blocks. She thus creates a small archaic cinema in which we can look away from ourselves into the universal. In this modest comfort, we can each, on a temporal journey, observe the agitation of the mind. Just as, when staring out of the window of a train, subject to a flow of luminous flashes, we can let ourselves be carried away into a world of intermediate time. Projecting films in a cloth hut implies sound porosity, visual permeability, a circulation between two areas, two remote worlds. In here, one finds oneself behind a moucharabieh, those traditional Arabian balconies which allow one to look outside without being seen.
A hut, because of its simplicity, stands symbolically in opposition to the arrogance of tower blocks which rise hundreds of metres high, competing for domination and power. This is how the architect Jean Prouvé came to imagine small houses, six metres by six, which could be set up in a day. More recently, the Japanese Shigeru Ban thought up a cardboard shelter, The Paper Log House, a genuine miniature home in kit, extremely economical, as an answer to the emergency of natural disasters.
Un matin à venir (A day to come), 2004
… suspended time
Inspired by a poem by Mahmoud Darwish, with music composed by the flautist, Sylvain Perret, this sequence, first shot with Super 8, was subsequently digitalized. A bare rocky landscape which could be Palestine, a waterfall, the ebb and flow of waves, a single character, an aged Arab woman (….. ) Her gestures are slow, ritualized, time does not seem to matter. An olive grove can be seen, with black cloth hanging from the branches. A ghostly remoteness from the rational world.
Ephinaneïa, 2004 – 2006
… non-linear time
As well as its familiar religious connotation, epiphany is also connected to the pagan worship of the sun. Therefore the main reference here is the revelation of light. An anachronistic digest of pictures, mostly taken in Cuba, sometimes cruel, sometimes lively, short scenes, just a few seconds each, strung together according to the cut-up principle favoured by Brion Gyson. (….) With the iconographic expertise of a goldsmith, certain shots, in melancholic and poetic tones, demonstrate the peculiarities of landscape and nature (…..) The film begins with the fleeting vision of a young man with a shaven head, almost subliminal, dozing. Unicorn in his nakedness. All the little scenes that follow invite us into metaphorical reality, into temporal discontinuity, as if all the things unfolding were only deformed eccentricities of our own dreams.
Entre chien et loup (Dusk), 2006
... the quest for a future, his own future, and the fatal straight line of human time
A short, fugitive, minimal video, filmed on the Isle of Youth, Cuba, at the moment of the day that Claire Tabouret most favours. A small boy rushes between night and day, scampering briefly across the screen. Enticement of an in-between generation, the child’s sprint towards somewhere or something, we know not what, maybe to another moment of the day, authenticates his quest for a future, his own future. His time is the fatal straight line of human time, with a start and a finish.
Editing as in directing
Her videos, like her paintings, move us in and out in order to view the world from both far and near. Understanding a fi lm remains subjective, subject as it is to individual interpretation; it seems that the artist has started from this very evidence in order to reverse the procedure and effect. With shots of ordinary scenes and art fi lm work, the author has deconstructed her story so that the spectator can build his own. The pictures are removed from their context and reassembled according to a well worked-out nonsensical narrative and unrealistic temporality.
The scenes slide by in temporal aquaplaning, with fl ashback and fl ashforward. “Film directing is like daydreaming” declared Antonioni. Rather than justifying a story (besides, is there only one story?) the author builds up a mental territory made of narrative and temporal ellipses. Through this careful way of working on the experience of narration, the meta-psychological atmosphere of the film is created.
To my one desire, 2006
This painting, 130x130 cm, made of 16500 one centimetre squares, has been painted in an infinite variety of blues. It owes its name to the sixth of the famous Lady and the Unicorn tapestries, woven in silk and wool at the end of the 14th century, exhibited at the Cluny Museum in Paris. Claire Tabouret has fixed her attention on the colour of the “island” which represents the background of the scene; taking hold of the idea and breaking away from the patterns, she has produced the blue of the “island”, square after square, in every shade of an immense colour chart. Her work makes a passing reference to 4096 Farben (Colours) created by Gerhard Richter in 1974. (…) Claire Tabouret is interested in the experience of illusion, that of infinite sky, of the mystery of desire, of powdery rain, of veils of drizzle, the atmospheres she is particularly fond of in her films. (…) What it is possible to make out in the very illegibility of the background triggers off a succession of mental images (…) no motif being represented, nevertheless everyone being able to find one.
…circular time, unfolding on immobile paths
The Circles are felt pen drawings and animated videos. The films are made by juxtaposing and superimposing very short recorded actions which, put end to end, stroke beside stroke, induce the motor of the whole process. The artist starts with a simple short line, drawn with a felt pen, which she develops concentrically in a centripetal direction, leading the process to a final halt at the centre point. Every stroke, surreptitiously filmed on video, acts as a coupling, engages itself in its own life story, and comes, just a few minutes later to a jerky conclusion. As a result, two versions of the work exist; on one hand, the drawings on paper which prettily evoke the complex iris of the eye, and, on the other, the slightly racing video films which trace the epic journeys of each line, drawn in concerted action.
Sanded paintings, 2004-2008
… internal light, reversed time
In 2004, Claire Tabouret embarked on producing a painting on wood which she then sanded down. Many more followed, meeting the same fate, going through the same violation. A pictorial series took shape, which has continued until today. Here, the artist is looking for the initial whiteness by removing the colours and shapes that she has painted on the surface. (....) In doing so, she denies that a gesture has a limit. Using sandpaper, she radically sands down the painting as if to discover its internal light, in reversed time. Just at the limit of disappearance, there only remains a hint of what the painting was before its annihilation. (...) The nebulous work of art will light up in the eyes of the viewers. By doing this, Claire Tabouret comes back again to the experience of painting, the painter’s body language which takes precedence over the actual picture. Some may think she is insulting the picture, just as she is insulting the finish of her work, mocking her own talent. (...)
Imposture of time
Contrary to the idea of something clearly defined, well accomplished, immobile, permanent, regular, well positioned, masterly, linear narration, Claire Tabouret places emphasis on the idea of something undefined, limitless, erasable, in-between, non linear narration, rhythmic movement, experiment and risk, imposture of time. Claire Tabouret, in continuous exile and self-effacement, extracts samples from her pictures, catching just a moment of time, refusing what is undeniable, denying finality. Following Maurice Blanchot’s example, she pursues her research not along a “path without a goal” but fully aware of the certainty of a “goal with no path”.