Nicol Allan: Collages
20 November – 22 January 2022
PV and Book Launch Friday 19 November, 6-8pm
Curated by Rye Dag Holmboe
Nicol Allan (1931-2019) is an important yet almost unknown artist who lived and worked in the United States and Great Britain. Over more than half a century, Allan produced sumi, wood reliefs, watercolours and occasionally oils. His primary medium, however, was paper collage.
Nicol Allan: Collages at the Laure Genillard Gallery, London, is the first exhibition to show collages from the breadth of Allan’s career. Curated by Rye Dag Holmboe and accompanied by a book of the same name, published by Slimvolume, the works presented in this exhibition are fragile and physically intimate. They allude to the natural world, to landscape and to human life, and sometimes float playfully between figuration and abstraction. The sense of scale can be disorientating; small works in paper that intimate dimensions of experience quite out of proportion with their size. The collages also engage in subtle and original ways with the major abstract art movements of the twentieth century, as well as other traditions such as Folk Art or Japanese and Chinese calligraphy.
For personal reasons and because of circumstance, Allan only ever produced around two
hundred collages; many of the works included in this exhibition have never been seen before. This is the first time they are shown and, after decades of obscurity, are finally given the attention and life they deserve.
Image credits: Nicol Allan, Composition F5, 1991, collage with pencil, 265x319mm