« No artist is absolutely master of his material, which is not a simple moldable in the service of its artistic thought. There is necessarily dialogue between the hand and the object, so sluggish it is before being worked. It is the capacity to take into account the answer of its material which we can judge the artist through.

We shall imagine easily that when the material makes way for a human being, for a horse which is sculptured at the same time as sculptor, the dialogue between him and his rider is not only essential but that it is the texture of the work. »

Bartabas, extract from Manifeste pour la vie d’artiste

In the rage and ferociousness feigned in the days of Cabarets (1984-1990), with the great Friesian that pretended to devour its master as a terrorizing and juvenile demiurge; in the booted eagle, the permanent escort for the black colossus named Zingaro; from the spiritedly rebellious adolescence to the current asceticism, with its clean lines and shadow theatre, remaining unfailingly cavalier; everything is there, in secret, inscribed on the surface of the horses’ hair, flanks and necks. 

The bird of prey has turned into a white goose, seemingly less wild, but still in flight.  All are free to play with the emblems, and long-lost horses not reincarnated.

Sophie Nauleau, extract from L’autre Bartabas

To follow are presented some of the most symbolic chargers among 150 horses which participated in the shows of Zingaro for 30 years.


The fierceness and ferocity celebrated at the time of the Cabarets (1984-1990), with the terrifying and juvenile demiurge, the imposing friesian pretending to devour his master; the booted eagle escorting everywhere the black mastodon, called Zingaro; from this fiercely rebellious adolescence, up to the present asceticism, of drama and theater of shadows but always cavalier, everything is there, secretly, inscribed on edge of horsehair, rump and neck.

The bird of prey has changed into a white goose, apparently less wild, but the flight remains.

Free to everyone to waltz the emblems. And to the vanished horses not to reincarnate.

Sophie Nauleau, extract from L’autre Bartabas


Love of horse, soft, wise, moderate. In the stable as on tour, never a word, a complaint, a shiver. The horse is a cream. Pure kindness. Was he the idol of all the troop of Zingaro because it seemed to be the horse idol of Bartabas? Absolutely not. It was the horse liked by the tribe, its talisman, because for horses as human, certain are irresistible. They are, and there everything goes well, the tensions evaporate, the life becomes beautiful.
Dolaci was an angel.

Bartabas:  » it was maybe my best horse …  »
The rider becomes pensive, the eyes go out, hide themselves of a sepia tint, this complexion of herbs dry and turned yellow by the cold season which had the dress of the pleasant Dolaci. Disciplined in his body, seriousness, he was an artist who held his speeds. Together, on a light air of cimbalom, they spun around a garrocha (long perch of the iberian riders to sort out bulls), maintained oblique or vertical in the center of the track by the palm of Bartabas.
And Dolaci, in a tiny gallop, a gallop cloud, a powdery gallop, the head giving rhythm to the cotton beetles of the gypsy piano, put a hood by the effort, swirled like a moth around this point, this lance which did not need to pierce two hearts to make it one.

Homéric – extract from Zingaro – 25 ans


Quixote was an artist, a rare find.
Originally, this jewel belonged to a rejoneador came bullfighting in Avignon. It was the poor facing the bull, bane of many horses, no longer wanted. But was tidy sum he expected. Bartabas had tried, and the time of a wink, a change of foot, he had seen a crazy thing unknown. The attraction had him back the night the bullfighter pulled up his herd in the van. Zartagas (and his faithful hailed the Baron) had hidden his few blocks away. Quixote was attached to a sad wall , in the stream of air, lost soul forsaken, an unloved one. In advised horse dealer , our squire got it, not knowing how he would justify the purchase in the accounts of the young company Zingaro.

They worked piaffe, canter on the spot, the animal was impeccable. One day, after observing the particular position of the rider James Fillis on an old cliche, the idea of galloping back, in the ultimate challenge, tickled her brain. Today, when Bartabas remembers the moment where Quixote took two strides back, his eye startled emotion. it seemed crazy, so miraculous that he immediately stopped to cherish him.


It is in Italy, not far from Milan, that Bartabas had fallen by chance on Félix.
He did not know this horse race, Hackney, quite at the same time high as a pony but presenting the anatomical harmony of a real horse and atomic speeds.
The director wanted to work on the codes of the body.
Still foal, Félix was very aggressive. He attacked, brave small warrior who doubted nothing. He was also a player and a greedy stalk, two sizeable assets to begin a beautiful complicity with the man-horse of Aubervilliers.
Set apart his reptilian convolutions in the hips of Bartabas, he put a clog on the thigh of his companion, as a poet, having dipped his feather into the ink, of an inspired punctuation, would offer us a big divine breath of fresh air.
More raging, this charming sprite whose tie of tail became salt-and-pepper, crossed his foreleg, and so turned in small horse corkscrew, he looked up and down you better than a giant.
This crunchy pastry and crunching devourer native of Lilliput will stay for ever Félix the Great.

Homéric – extract from Zingaro – 25 ans


 » I so much trusted him « , the rider remembers himself.
Coupled with Vinegar, and however free of their movements, their performance during Eclipse, both wrapped and extended by wings of black silk, was beautiful to cry.
In prelude, their winged silhouette fell on the opal of the circle. Draped of night, the arms of the centaur opened as to go in cross. On the ground, the erotic, slowly spread outline, bloomed like brown nymphs and aliformes whom a deep passion half-opens then quarters.
Then, the chrysalis became imago, revealed the forequarters white and powdery of the Andalusian stallion.
The sensual nerve, the eye bathed by the brightness spumeux of his colour, Vinegar waited for a sign, for one creased by linen, a breath, a beating of lashes.

Homéric – extract from Zingaro – 25 ans


Horizonte, this generous Lusitanian appeared in Eclipse, then dapple grey, will have followed him everywhere, in a disturbing goods lift of the Champs-Elysées and up to the end of the world – via the Arena of the Great stable of Versailles where, on February 23rd, 2003, one Monday of break, he inaugurated the Academy of the equestrian show in Chinese shade, opening so royally the way to the young riders of this active utopia.

Sophie Nauleau, extract from L’autre Bartabas

Le Caravage - Movie of Alain Cavalier

Every day, early in the morning, Bartabas works its favorite horse Caravage. Both have a silent conversation where each guides the other one. Will they reach a certain perfection which authorizes them to appear in front of a public?
Cross health problems, recover from failed sessions, become refined, enjoy the enjoyment of one without fault. The film-maker is admitted witnessing this intimacy. In the long run, it is the birth of a trio where hearts are together. The spectator will make maybe a quartet.