Les Veilleurs means guardians or guards. But what are the figures in this painting guarding? We have no idea. Claire Tabouret depicts a group of children we know nothing about: we don’t know who they are, what age they are nor what they’re doing. Each child wears an unusual costume and holds a dazzling white, almost fluorescent, pole. They all look out directly at us with a hostile expression, immersed in the decidedly surreal acid light. And that is the true subject of the painting: bathing each figure, it invades the entire surface of the painting, freezing time into an anxious moment. And what if we are the enemy they are being guarded from?