Text (from the Library of the Contemporary Art Museum) written by the Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf in the context of an exhibition featuring the Gouaches by Maurice Raymond, held between October 22nd and November 2nd, 1955.
Born in Montreal in 1912, Maurice Raymond was among the first generation of professors trained at Montreal’s École des Beaux-Arts, who still influence its academic orientation today. His artistic training was further enriched during visits to the United States and Europe.
His works have been exhibited in Québec, Ottawa, Toronto, Albany (N.Y.) and Rio de Janeiro. In 1945, he was among those awarded Quebec’s Grand Prix de Peinture. He was commissioned for religious decorations in several churches in Montreal and the surrounding region.
As a whole, the artistic approach in the gouaches exhibited by Maurice Raymond at the Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf represents a renewed effort by the artist to express a deeper inner truth. Yet it is actually not inconsistent with his better known earlier works. His gouaches reveal the same quality of inspiration: they invite contemplation and poetry, only this time through the sole medium of forms and colors.
The very texture of the gouaches, sometimes infused with an evocative and enfolding quality, is evidence in itself of the artist’s renewed level of mastery. The refinement and subtlety that are the hallmarks of Maurice Raymond’s discreet style are easily recognizable, yet with the addition of a new intensity of presence.
These recent works involve enough references to reality to stimulate our imagination, without deflecting our perception of the essential: the poetry of tints and volumes. They incite us to surrender to our own inner music, as it resonates with the artist’s.