July 5 – November 4, 2018
L’Errante (The Wanderer)
July 7 – 24, 2018 – in the Celestins Church
In partnership with the Avignon Festival
“Otherwise, all I remember of the denizens of the Nocturama is that several of them had strikingly large eyes, and the fixed, inquiring gaze found in certain painters and philosophers who seek to penetrate the darkness which surrounds us purely by means of looking and thinking.” WG Sebald, Austerlitz
In summer 2017, when the museum was devoting a major exhibition to the private collection of agnès b., two portraits of children painted by Claire Tabouret were among more than 300 works in the remarkable ensemble, which ranged from the beginnings of modern art to the very latest productions.
Born in France in 1981, the artist now lives and works in Los Angeles, where her creations were quickly snapped up by prestigious private and public collections. The exhibition at the Collection Lambert is an opportunity to view a large gathering of her group portraits and ceramics, as well as new works painted specially for the occasion.
The crowds of children who populate the canvases of Claire Tabouret stare out at us in unsettling, artfully orchestrated group portraits. Pyramids, nightshirts, carnivals, class, groups, watchers – all have their stories to tell; all bear the traces of a past that only their clothing – as precise as it is remote from us – begins to describe. “This was. This is part of a story”* they tell us, even as we seek to banish the past from our minds.
Each group, in its particular way, fills the space it occupies with the history of those “affected bodies, affective bodies”**, becoming a locus of memory, safekeeping and persistence. The sights before us might have emerged from a collective unconscious, signaling to us and reminding us of who we are.
Alongside them, painted ceramics and solo portraits are dotted around like “mystic solitudes”** that appear to have broken free from the group in order to re-emphasize their presence, extend its duration and prolong our encounter.
The second part of the exhibition, entitled “L’Errante (The Wanderer)”, is on show at the Église des Célestins from July 7th to 24th.
* Jacques Rancière, Figures of History, Polity Press
** Georges Didi-Huberman, “To Render Sensible” in What is a People?, Columbia University Press
Exhibition organized in association with the Avignon Festival.
With the support of the Galerie Almine Rech and the Emerige endowment fund.