Through its presentation of some fifteen of Edmund Alleyn’s most beautiful ink wash drawings, the exhibitionA Brief Summary of the History of Art… And Other Stories provides a look at the last twenty years of the artist’s career. The series of works entitled Indigo (1985–1990), inspired by the purchase of a lakeside home, conveys feelings of nostalgia and memories of past joys. Vanitas (1990–1995) evokes a journey and the enigmatic junction of irony and fate, while Éphémérides (1995–2004) features objects—recurring symbols that were already present in his 1960s paintings—in chaotic suspension. These ink wash drawings, which comprised the major part of his work during those years, constitute his veritable artistic legacy.
The exhibition also affords the opportunity to discover the book Edmund Alleyn ou le détachement, jointly published by Leméac and Éditions Simon Blais. Taking her inspiration from the artist’s ink wash drawings, Canadian novelist Nancy Huston has written a poetic ode to creativity that sets up a dialogue between the words and pictures of two artists who chose linguistic exile in order to find the “right image.”