Tabulae takes the underlying concept present in Annabelle d’Huart’s Shitao paintings to a smaller format. The new series leaves behind Shitao’s huge frontal views to show instead a series of jubilant close-ups. Using lateral photographs she was able to capture the distortions within lines her previous work to highlight their composition and chromatic nuances. By isolating certain vibrating details, Annabelle d’Huart shatters Shitao’s initial composition to reveal its essence: Tabulae.
Tabulae is composed of twelve 2.5cm thick wooden boards, each measuring 27 x 38 cm. Each has a 45° bevelled back, gilded with gold leaf, which create a luminous halo on the wall.
Several layers of white Meudon were added onto a matt primer to produce a base as dense and smooth as basalt before being sanded down and gradually covered with layers and layers of coloured pencils until the transparency of a watercolour is obtained. After having been treated in such a manner, the wood of each board is now marked with unique grooves and ridges. Following Japanese teachings which accept imperfections in of natural elements in their work, Annabelle d’Huart accepted this dissonance. In fact, the cracks thwart the precision and initial homogeneity of the drawing while underlining the fragility of the medium.
The effect is reminiscent of her Atlantis series where Annabelle d’Huart was inspired by the simultaneous durability and vulnerability of ancient frescoes: “They subjected to all kinds of aggression from Man, nature and time, and yet, their beauty transcends millennia.
… Pace, speed, brilliance… Intrepid, calm…
states of the soul –
alive – fed with elegance and joy.
At the speed of light – floating like light boats –
on light gold.
Variations. Like words bursting forth
– in a breath. Waves. Smooth & tender.
Whispers peeling off white light –
Yes, they speak.
… to tell us something,
where the voice of a sky with transparent, concise lines can be heard.
A whole ramification of plans, directions: from everywhere,
and flying all over the place –
these lines and curves sweeping us along and besieging us
with a lasso of soft clearness –
Brushing past disappearance, or intensifying,
or landing, or resting, by the grace of a shade –
bathed in white.