The works of Clémentine de Chabaneix all have the same quality: they systematically give the audience something they didn’t expect, and one look is never enough to exhaust their multi-faceted content.
Their appeal is conveyed by very simple things: the apparent softness of enameled ceramics representing young girls with round wistful faces, or furry animals with whose pelts are linked, as in the case of bears, to stuffed toys from our childhoods. But boundaries are often blurry.
First, between human and animal. When a young girl is not hiding behind a cat or a wolf mask, she carries a fox on her shoulder or a toad in her hand. And when the mask is not enough any more, she turns into a Chimaera with a donkey or a goat head.
Second, between dream and reality. The Chimaera is one example of it, as well as the peaceful coexistence between wild animals and frail young girls. But there are many more, for the works of Clémentine de Chabaneix are peppered with dream references. In her sculptures, her characters ride pets, or use toads as a step, but this change in scale never takes the onlooker aback because of the dreamlike nature of the works. In her drawings, often somber, characters meet their doppelgangers, made of light and darkness, and isolated houses overlook ethereal landscapes where simple silhouettes cast oversized shadows.
Finally, between the feelings of the onlookers, who, brought in by the softness of the works, keep looking because of their oddity and slightly out of place feel. More often than not, they have a hard time pinpointing their emotions in front of smooth eye-catching sculptures and mysterious drawings with their gothic-romantic atmosphere that are open to never ending interpretations. This is where their strength reside: the works of Clémentine de Chabaneix go along with any mood swing and the weather outside, but, more importantly, the weather inside.