Hot, Hot Art
February 21, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Photo - Hi

The action is fast, the result is immediate. I work in spontaneity, in the emotion of the moment. What I have to do, has to be done immediately!" She says, confessing about her fascination for water, the omnipotence of nature, the living force.

Anne -Marie Naboulet is a unique metal enamel artist who is part of the 20-member French team at the Muscat International Folklore and Handicrafts Festival. The artists and artisans represent the Poitou-Charentes region which is located on the west coast of France between Paris and Bordeaux.

It is a unique art of applying enamel colours on metals sheets and heating them in a specially-made oven up to 850 C. She takes out the red hot metal plates, applies enamel powder on them in specific patterns and replaces them in the oven. The traditional oven is equipped with ceramic tiles for insulation. Once the metal sheet is out of the oven, you see myriads of hues in unique designs and, she assures, "the colours and designs won't fade in another 1000 years." Anne also works with silver, gold, copper and bronze.

At age 15, Anne-Marie Naboulet was faced with a dilemma: to be a decorative artist or a conservationist. Although she preferred the latter, the flautist and classical singer that she also is, Anne could not follow her second passion, painting, diligently. She now works in a studio, in Montrollet in Charente, near Saint- Junien, to live out her passion, since the last ten years. "I had studied law, political science and music, she says. I then made ​​a career as a lawyer. However, this (enamel art) has long been my passion and I wanted to take a plunge to find a more artistic profession."

Anne studied the works of famous enamel artists. "It was like a thunderbolt," she said, "I said to myself: this is what I want to do." In her words: "I met enamel and fell in love with it." Anne then joined the School of Arts and Crafts of Limoges to learn enamel on metal art. "Since that day, it has been pure joy for me. The training was great because it allows us to learn all the basic techniques of enamel," she asserts.

Anne -Marie Naboulet now creates her own way of art. Fascinated by the animal world, particularly birds, she has embarked on making life-sized sculptures in exuberant colours of plumage. "My specialty is enamels of animals and birds. So many beautiful colours can be seen in birds and animals. Enamel is colour," she said.

Inventive and constantly seeking new experiments, she used the technique of "plique à jour", allowing her to enamel without support, producing a delicate effect of stained glass. The original approach of her work has led her to explore new possibilities and develop an unprecedented technique which allows her to create original and striking artworks. "I have invented this technique of making enamels without metal. It is transparent. It is a new technique which I invented. With this I make precious jewellery and chandeliers." she says with beaming passion.

Anne was the guest of the European Parliament for a solo exhibition this February, where she showcased animal and abstract sculptures and furniture which have metal work in rich colours of enamel. "It was very interesting because I met a lot of people from different countries.  Some of them invited me to their countries to exhibit my works, she said adding that she will be soon showing her work in Ireland, Geneva and New York.

In her studio pavilion in the festival venue, she is currently working on a bigger piece, a door, with the Arabic theme. The cost of the works exhibited at the pavillion ranges from Euro 3000 to 7000 (RO 1200 to 3000 approx.)

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