Adam Donaldson Powell as visual artist

My latest paintings (abstract, colourfield, geometric, abstract expressionist, minimalist etc.): 2016-2020

 

“From 2016 to 2020, I am making a series of paintings as documentation of how I experience this particular time period. Some works merely have titles and others carry texts which give more insight into my thoughts and feelings associated with the themes and the paintings themselves. Many of these works describe the search for security and understanding in a particularly tumultuous era where suspicion, fear, hate, lies and pain abounds together with joy, disillusionment, and just not wanting to give a fuck about real problems that we feel that we cannot do anything about anyway (climate change, terrorism, pollution of air, water, land, fishes, food etc.). The temptation to drown ourselves in materialism, reality show life, and other banalities is great. This is also an era where many “old truths” are being exposed as having been fallacious, and where social concepts are challenged and flipped in the twinkling of an eye (or a media/social media scandal). Some of my works address specific persons in history, such as Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau, Jacques Brel, and others who I now see quite differently than in previous decades. I too have different “eyes” than before. And thus, many of the themes that I paint about in this series are (as usual with my work) issues, questions and ideas that can be experienced as uncomfortable to many. I give no answers, and make no statements or demands. I only ask questions — through images, geometry, color and textures on canvas.

The year 2018 begins with several miniature paintings that make up a series entitled “J’en ai rien à branler !: 18 études abstraites en miniature — Feindre l’indifférence dans un monde fou et brutal. (“J’EN AI RIEN À BRANLER / I DON’T GIVE A FUCK!”: 18 abstract studies, in miniature — Feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.) I have posted nine of them so far, and there will be a total of eighteen miniature paintings in this series, so please return to this page frequently to keep up with the new additions.

I wish this online exhibition to be more entertaining than merely looking at my paintings, without any other contextual material. Therefore I have included some illustrative materials that have either inspired me or which create additional commentary. These are in the forms of photos, poems, essays, and videos — both built in and linked. Enjoy!

— Adam Donaldson Powell, 2018

“J’EN AI RIEN À BRANLER / I DON’T GIVE A FUCK!”: 18 abstract studies, in miniature — Feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 1, Endless Winter”, 15×15 cm., oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 2, Spleen – love dissolving”, 20×20 cm., oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 3, Roses and a teardrop for Las Ramblas”, 15×15 cm, oil on canvas, 2018. This miniature abstract painting was inspired by the terror attack upon the people at Las Ramblas in Barcelona. It depicts a rose-floral wallpaper-like background with a line/queue that is broken — interrupted by a single teardrop. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 4 — Trou de la gloire/Gaufres bleues; Oui, l’amour est bleu … et la véritable gloire est un trou dans un mur qui s’effrité, («Gloryhole/Blue waffles; Yes, love is blue … and real glory is a hole in a crumbling wall»)”, 15×15 cm., oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 5 — Ghosts no. 1 — Climate change sucks the life out of Spring”, 15×15 cm., oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 6 — Ghosts no. 2 — Climate change sucks the life out of Spring”, 15×15 cm., oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 7, Love between vampires: Yeah, Baby — let’s tear off a piece! (L’amour entre les vampires: Viens m’enculer!)”, 15×15 cm, oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

Read my poem about love between vampires HERE!

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 8, Niqab — of love and fetish in an age of terror”, 15×15 cm, oil on canvas, 2018. Keywords: niqab, AK47, roses, blood, hidden passion, discomforting eyes, risks, fetish, love, 15×15 cm, oil on canvas, 2018. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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“J’en ai rien à branler/I don’t give a fuck! no. 9, Pissing on our parade”, 15×15 cm, oil on canvas, 2018. “Pissing on our parade”, is a commentary on gay violence — i.e. violence, murder and terror committed both by and against gays. LGBTQ-persons are “people”, and prone to the same problems and personality issues as all others in society. However, whenever an LGBTQ-person commits an act of terror (Orlando), sexual violence and harassment (by the way, these harassments are seldom investigated as #metoo, or even hate crimes), murder plus cannibalism, or other acts that feel like a violation of what many consider to be basic humane and civilised values, it feels as embarrassing to me as a gay person as muslims must feel when yet another act of hate-inspired terrorism is committed in the name of Islam. It is also embarrassing to me as a human and as a soul in active incarnation. These individuals — regardless of whether they are disturbed, or just hateful — are pissing on our parade. Keywords: pissing, parade, #stopthebleeding, wounded hearts, rainbow, #stopthehate. This painting is part of a series of miniature abstract oil paintings made in 2018 — this series is about feigning indifference in a crazy and brutal world.

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COMING SOON: “SILENCE” and “NOISE” — a commentary on media’s selective coverage of current issues.

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“Love illusion” is a smoky colourfield oil painting on canvas, 65 x 90 cm., 2016-2020. The aim was to use colourfield painting to address emotion. In this case the illusion of love is effected by a smoky grey region threatening to totally encompass the colour of classical love: pink. The eye is naturally drawn towards and into the central grey area, which has the appearance and effect of a snowy old-fashioned television screen — pulling us into a state of uncertainty and the unknown.

It cries out for sugar therapy:

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The devil comes at night time,, oil on canvas, 50 x 50 cm., 2016-2020.

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“Eclipse”, oil on canvas, 40 x 40 cm., 2016-2020.

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“Tears flowing while walking through the city”, oil on canvas, 40 x 40 cm., 2016-2020.

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“Tears flowing while walking through the forest”, oil on canvas, 40 x 40 cm., 2016-2020.

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Next, here is a musical hint about my painting entitled «Le jour du couronnement / L’obsession des Jacobites» (The Coronation Day / Jacobite Obsession»):

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The painting:

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«Le jour du couronnement / L’obsession des Jacobites» (The Coronation Day / Jacobite Obsession»), 2016-2020:
This 90 x 65 cm. abstract-geometric landscape oil painting on canvas features textiles reminiscent of royalty and festivities: a plush luscious green velvet hill and a shimmering blue heavy silk fabric sky, separated by a gold and silver brocade sash which represents the horizon at dusk. Swaying in the precocious Scottish wind in the Sky of Dreams is a somewhat unstable and slightly-tarnished large golden fleur de lis, and in the bottom section is a cocksure prancing silver unicorn — the fleur de lis (the royal tressure) and the unicorn (the Scottish national animal) both being closely related to Scottish history and tradition. Together, all of these elements comprise the Jacobite obsession/dream of one day crowning a new Jacobite King or Queen of Scotland. Finally, the traditional St. Andrew’s saltire or crux decussata gives way to the glittering sword / scepter of glorious resurrection — of both St. Andrew and the Jacobite dream … never again to be subordinate, tortured, enslaved, murdered or otherwise “crucified”.

Alba gu bràth!

Details from the painting:

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“Sunrise in early Spring”, 90 x 65 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

“Sunrise in early Spring” is a self-explanatory geometric/abstract oil painting on canvas inspired by the hints of Spring sunshine appearing already at the end of February — a doorway of Light predicting a new seasonal awakening.

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“The lone moose at Sunset”, 90 x 65 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

The lone moose at sunset is a classic Norwegian motive that was popular in inexpensive kitsch paintings until the end of the 1970s. These paintings allude to typical Norwegian nature-romanticism, including the moose, afternoon/evening sun, pine forest, small forest ponds, and the quiet drama of the sunset that is bigger than Life. They are no longer found in each and every home and vacation cabin. Here I have re-introduced this iconic image in a modern color field context — emphasizing the dramatic elements of the all pervading sunset; and here suggesting the mystical qualities of the Northern Lights, a raging forest inferno and at once the quiet comfort and warmth of a fireplace. The lone moose disappears in the shadowy magnificent glow.

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“Ne me quitte pas”, oil on canvas, 65 x 90 cm., 2016-2020 is an abstract geometric painting inspired by Jacques Brel’s famous love song, and its imagined personal history. Here his plea — Ne me quitte pas (Don’t leave me) — is scrawled on a blackboard in the mathematics classroom (an arena where the follies of hopeful youthfulness/adolescence meet up with the scientific rigours of deciding if a problem has zero, multiple or perhaps one solution only).

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“Talking heads / Social media”, 90 x 65 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020, is all about “the buzz” (slander, lies, cheating, hate and trolling, #hatersgonnahate, #americafirst, #metoo etc.) in black and white.

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“Faceless animus”, 65 x 90 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020, asks us how much we really know another person, and how much we really want to know about who they really are — the stereotypical/racial countenance … or the faceless animus that lies behind it?

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“Le jeune homme et La Mort”, 65×90 cm., installation de peinture: huile sur toile et filet de camouflage, Adam Donaldson Powell, 2016-2020.

This discovery of mine regarding Cocteau and his “Le jeune homme et la mort” made me quite enraged with the man, and with how he used his art to get revenge. I went through a long process, at the end of which I decided to reinterpret his theme and create a modern version of “Le jeune homme et la mort”. Just to illustrate my thinking throughout this process, I have included quite a bit of diary notes — in my own halting French and in English. In a way, they are an important part of this art installation piece.

L’histoire :
https://adam-donaldson-powell.blog/2017/11/06/le-jeune-homme-et-la-mort/

LE JEUNE HOMME ET LA MORT.

“Redéfinir l’interprétation de Cocteau de «Le jeune homme et la mort»:
Aujourd’hui, j’ai enfin pu mettre la dernière couche de textures sur ma peinture en cours: «Le jeune homme et la mort» – il représente un ordre violent et hasardeux; chaos mental blanchi à la chaux avec la conviction de purification et avec des marques d’automutilation … la dépression tourbillonnant avec des atonalites rythmiques tellement écrasante que l’électricité bleue des impulsions et des courants est étouffée par un énorme oreiller blanc qui donne une impression générale de calme et contrôle – tant que l’on suit religieusement chaque respiration. C’est une atmosphère de beauté violente; l’environnement intérieur qui lave et consume toutes les perceptions du monde extérieur, nous pousse à l’ultime acte de correction et de gloire: le suicide. La blancheur de la dépression est la lumière au bout du tunnel de la mort – promesse de renaissance, nouvelle virginité et ultime séduction. Les dalles épaisses de peinture représentent les murs de boue que nous érigeons pour nous garder en sécurité dans nos cocons – notre forteresse. La dépression ne concerne pas la tristesse, mais plutôt la construction de notre château dans les cieux, où notre indifférence au succès et à l’échec peut enfin s’épanouir. Nirvana. Ici, la mort n’est pas une femme, mais la propre psyché du jeune homme. La vision misogyne de Cocteau sera blanchie au néant, et exposée comme un vide qui se déguiserait en auto-victimisation masculine. Une fois que les nombreuses couches de peinture à l’huile sont complètement sèches, je vais couvrir la peinture minimaliste avec filet de camouflage ; qui forceront le spectateur à vouloir regarder les désagréments dans les images. Regarder sous le voile et ensuite s’identifier suffisamment dans le Mental pour pouvoir chercher le voile de Vide qui est sous le voile. Bien sûr, personne ne veut vraiment connaître la dépression d’une autre personne – surtout s’il est suicidaire. Nous combattons tous la même dépression et le néant. C’est seulement une pensée loin. Le résultat sera une peinture de sculpture en deux dimensions. Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau était très talentueux, très courageux, très “gay”, très célèbre … et très misogyne. Seuls les malheureux ou les idiots seraient heureux de le mettre en colère.” (Adam Donaldson Powell, Décembre 2017)

Le jeune homme et la mort

“Dans un atelier, un jeune homme seul attend. Entre la jeune fille qui était cause de sa détresse. Il s’élance vers elle, elle le repousse, il la supplie, elle l’insulte, le bafoue et s’enfouit. Il se pend. La chambre s’envole. Ne reste que le corps du pendu. Par les toits, la mort arrive en robe de bal. Elle ôte son masque : c’est la jeune fille. Alors elle pose son masque sur le visage de sa victime. Ensemble, ils s’en vont par les toits.”

— Jean Cocteau»

Plus de soixante-dix ans se sont écoulés depuis que ce travail a eu sa première mondiale. Et l’idée me hante toujours. L’histoire est trop mince … un cliché inverse conçu pour choquer. La femme qui triche a la froideur d’un homme, et l’homme désespéré (le cocu) se pendent comme la femme demande. L’ironie est qu’un certain nombre d’hommes aujourd’hui se suicident après l’infidélité ou le divorce de leur femme. Mais quoi d’autre est derrière ce suicide? Il y a sûrement des problèmes de dépression et de relation au sein de l’homme avant ce développement? La femme était-elle vraiment responsable de sa mort? L’infidélité d’une autre personne est-elle vraiment la cause du suicide – ou est-ce simplement un symptôme, le résultat d’une illusion de longue date qui ne peut plus être nié? N’est-ce pas une autre expression de la misogynie à l’époque du romantisme? Et comment puis-je recréer cette histoire / peinture – pénétrant davantage dans la psyché du jeune homme – bien au-delà de cette femme représentant la mort, qui peut si facilement être blâmée?

C’est la même chose pour les deux ou tous les sexes (il y en a plus de deux maintenant). Parce que la dépression et le suicide sont des sujets tabous, je veux forcer le public à s’engager à regarder et à marcher à l’intérieur du tableau. Ces problèmes doivent être normalisés – comme le cancer et d’autres syndromes et maladies de style de vie.

“Il est important de comprendre et d’accepter simplement que toutes nos expériences passées, qu’elles soient joyeuses ou tristes, continuent à nous accompagner tout au long de notre vie et affectent considérablement la façon dont nous nous sentons aujourd’hui. Les problèmes ne peuvent que déclencher des sentiments d’insécurité, de honte, d’envie ou de vengeance si nous nions qu’ils font partie de nous. Être submergé par de tels sentiments dans les situations les plus difficiles nous oblige à les reconnaître et à les intégrer consciemment en tant que parties naturelles de notre psyché. Ce n’est qu’alors que nous serons en mesure de développer une acceptation aimante de nous-mêmes avec tous nos défauts et insuffisances.”(astro.com)

Comme je le dis toujours, beaucoup de fiction est plus factuelle que ce que les lecteurs réalisent. Cocteau était très misogyne et sa fascination pour vouloir un fils, sa colère quand la femme de son choix (la princesse Natalie Paley) l’a rejeté: il a dit que les femmes étaient «les tueuses des enfants de poètes», les suicides dans sa vie, et ainsi de suite – indiquent ses problèmes psychologiques au travail dans cette histoire.

THE YOUNG MAN AND DEATH.

“Redefining Cocteau’s interpretation of “The young man and death”:
Today, I was finally able to put the last layer of textures on my current painting: “The young man and death” – it represents a violent and hazardous order; whitewashed mental chaos with the conviction of purification and with cutting knife marks of self-harm … and swirling depression with so many overwhelming rhythmic atonalites that the blue electricity of pulses and currents are stifled by a huge blanketing whiteness that gives a general impression of calm and control – as long as we follow each breath religiously. It is an atmosphere of violent beauty; the inner environment that cleanses and consumes all the perceptions of the outside world which drives us to the ultimate act of correction and glory: suicide. The whiteness of depression is the light at the end of the tunnel of death – promise of rebirth, new virginity and ultimate seduction. The thick slabs of paint represent the mud walls we erect to keep ourselves safe in our cocoons – in our fortress. Depression does not concern sadness, but rather the construction of our castle in heaven, where our indifference to success and failure can finally flourish. Nirvana. Here, death is not a woman, but the young man’s own psyche. The misogynistic vision of Cocteau will be whitewashed and exposed as a void that disguises itself as male self-victimization. Once the many layers of oil paint are completely dry, I will cover the minimalist painting with camouflage netting, this in order to force the viewer to want to look at the discomfort in the pictures. To look under the veil and then to identify oneself sufficiently in the Mind to be able to look for the veil of Emptiness that is under the veil. Of course, no one really wants to know about another person’s depression – especially if they are suicidal. We are all fighting the same depression and nothingness. It’s only a thought away. The result will be a two-dimensional sculpture painting. Jean Maurice Eugene Clement Cocteau was very talented, very brave, very “gay”, very famous … and very misogynistic. Only the unfortunate or idiots would be stupid enough to try to make him angry.” (Adam Donaldson Powell, December 2017)

“The young man and death In a workshop, a young man alone is waiting. In comes the girl who was the cause of his distress. He rushes towards her, she pushes him away, he begs her, she insults him, scoffs at him and tells him to go hang himself. He hangs himself. Only the body of the hanged man remains. Through the roofs, death then returns in a prom dress. She takes off her mask: it’s the girl. So she puts her mask on the face of her victim. Together, they go through the roofs.”
— Jean Cocteau

More than seventy years have passed since this work had its world premiere. And the idea still haunts me. The story is too thin … a cheap shot designed to shock. The cheating woman has the coldness of a man, and the desperate man (the cuckold) hang himself as the woman demands. The irony is that a number of men today commit suicide after their wife’s infidelity or divorce. But what else is behind this suicide? Surely there are problems of depression and relationship within man before this development? Was the woman really responsible for his death? Is the infidelity of another person really the cause of suicide – or is it just a symptom, the result of a long-standing illusion that can no longer be denied? Is not this another expression of misogyny in the age of Romanticism? And how can I recreate this story / painting – penetrating more into the young man’s psyche – far beyond this woman representing death, who can so easily be blamed?

It’s the same for both or all genders (there are more than two now). Because depression and suicide are taboo subjects, I want to force the public to commit to watching and walking inside the painting. These problems need to be normalized – like cancer and other syndromes and lifestyle diseases.

“It is important to understand and simply accept that all our past experiences, whether joyful or sad, continue to accompany us throughout our lives and greatly affect the way we feel today. Problems can only trigger feelings of insecurity, shame, envy or revenge if we deny that they are part of us. To be overwhelmed by such feelings in the most difficult situations requires us to recognize them and consciously integrate them as natural parts of our psyche. Only then will we be able to develop a loving acceptance of ourselves with all our flaws and shortcomings.” — from www. astro.com

As I always say, a lot of fiction is more factual than readers realize. Cocteau was very misogynistic and obsessed with wanting a son, and had great anger when the woman of his choice (Princess Natalie Paley) rejected him: he said that women were “the killers of poets’ children”, there had been many suicides in his life, and so on – all of which indicate his psychological problems at work in this story.

With Nureyev in the title role:

And with Barishnikov (from “White Nights”): HERE!

Read about Gustave Moreau’s painting “The Young Man and Death” HERE!

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Vertigo, 40×40 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

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Video game shooting gallery.

Video game shooting gallery, 50×50 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020. Description: In an age when oil paintings have little chance of competing with the internet, television and video games, I decided to paint an abstract depiction of a video game shooting gallery against a concrete background — no penetration.

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Emotional aftermath.

Les soirées de Nazelles, 50×50 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

My piano instructor John Ranck plays “Les soirées de Nazelles”, by Poulenc:

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Spring becoming Summer, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020.

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Nightfall – with Winter giving way to Spring, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020.

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Equilibrium, oil on canvas, 50x50 cm., 2016-2020.

Equilibrium, oil on canvas, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020.

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Reflection, oil on canvas, 50x50 cm., 2016.

Reflection, oil on canvas, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020.

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Geometric gossip, 40x40 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

Geometric gossip, 40×40 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020.

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Democracy by gun, oil on canvas, 100x80 cm., 2016-2020.

Democracy by gun – We the People, oil on canvas, 100×80 cm., 2016-2020.

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Tale of three colour fields (front view), oil on canvas, 81 x 100 cm., 2016-2020.

Tale of three colour fields (front view), oil on canvas, 81 x 100 cm., 2016-2020.

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Emptiness giving birth to Nothingness, oil on canvas, 100x80 cm.

Emptiness giving birth to Nothingness, oil on canvas, 100×81 cm., 2016-2020.

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Deconstructed pond, oil on canvas, 40x40 cm., 2016-2020.

Deconstructed pond, oil on canvas, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020.

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Playa del Postiguet (Alicante), oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm., 2016-2020.

Playa del Postiguet (Alicante), 30 x 30 cm., 2016-2020, Oil on canvas — in private collection; unavailable.

Check out this great YouTube video by Jacek Zarzycki of a walk on the Postiguet beach:

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Here is a side view of

“Flurry”, note the superimposed painted canvas cut-outs hanging over the flat surface, oil on canvas, 50×50 cm., 2016-2020. Oil on canvas — in private collection; unavailable.

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Horizon, oil on canvas, 40x40 cm., 2016-2020

Horizon, oil on canvas, 40×40 cm., 2016-2020

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Twilight, oil on canvas, 40x40 cm.

Twilight, oil on canvas, 40×40 cm., 2016-2020.

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Hands.

“Hands”, 30×30 cm., oil and charcoal on cardboard, 2016-2020.

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Sunset_colourfield

Sunset reflecting through Venetian blinds, onto wooden floor, 2016-2020.

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Floating_shards

Floating shards, 56 x 46 cm., oil on canvas with foil, 2016-2020.

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Aged stone (Oil on styrofoam), 2016-2020.

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“A Wrist Cutter’s Glow”, oil on canvas, 50 x 50 cm., 2016-2020

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Portal to Eternity, No. 1 (Oil on canvas — in private collection; unavailable), 2016-2020.

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Portal to Eternity, No. 2 (Oil on canvas), 2016-2020.

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Portal_No.3

Portal to Eternity, No. 3 (Oil on canvas — in private collection; unavailable), 2016-2020.

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Meteors in the night, oil on canvas, 50 x 50 cm., 2016-2020

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White night no. 1

“White night no. 1”, oil on canvas, 50 x 50 cm., 2016-2020

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avalanche

“Avalanche”, oil on canvas, 80 x 80 cm., 2016-2020

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raw

“RAW”, oil on canvas, 40 x 40 cm., 2016-2020

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Ascension2

Ascension, oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm., 2016-2020

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GonePrimal

Gone primal, oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm., 2016-2020

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bokstavelig_talt

Bokstavelig talt (literally speaking), oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm., 2016-2020

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Egreaterthanmc2

E is greater than mc2, oil on canvas, 40×40 cm., 2016-2020

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goth

Goth, oil on canvas, 40 x 40 cm., 2016-2020

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Vortex (Oil on canvas), 2016-2020.

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Not seeing the forest for the trees.

Not seeing the forest for the trees, oil on canvas/mixed media, 60×50 cm., 2016-2020

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“Tribute to Mars: The Great Source and Center”, oil on canvas, 50 x 50 cm., 2016-2020

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“Being = Nothingness”, 40×40 cm., oil on canvas, 2016-2020. NB. “Being = Nothingness” is my interpretation of Sartre’s “Being and Nothingness” in the style of Malevich (Russian Suprematism). Layer upon layer of white paint with shadows and reflections, eventually consolidating the monotony into two extremes of existence masquerading as seemingly identical apparitions in a flash of Light. This is just the latest in several paintings over the years where I have re-interpreted Malevich’s “White on White” masterpiece (from 1918).

NB. I personally consider Kazimir Malevich’s “White on white” painting to be a masterly work of art-philosophical genius. Read more about this iconic painting HERE!

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See several of Adam’s paintings on

SAATCHI ART

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And here is a quick recap/overview of my recent paintings and of my published books. For more information, please see the next pages of this blog.

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All about Adam.

 

the tunnel

REVIEWS OF ADAM’S LAST NOVEL: “THE TUNNEL AT THE END OF TIME”:

🔳 “LOOK INTO YOURSELF”
By Irene Brodsky on June 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
“The Tunnel At The End of Time” written in English/Russian by Adam Donaldson Powell and Rick Davis, with foreword by Adam Donaldson Powell and Azsacra Zarathustra.

It is an honor to review this most eye-opening, very well written and beautifully expressed book of poetry & drama that was written in two languages; and also includes a 14 Act Play! The book appears to be a serious look into one’s self, soul, being, spirit, surroundings, thoughts, reactions, and can be seen as philosophical, religious, mystical, spiritual, anger, reaching out for an answer, telling it like it is, no holds barred. I recommend this outstanding book for adults, age 18 & over because there is some strong language to express one’s deep feelings.

This book would be an excellent addition to the libraries and I am giving my own personal copy of this book to the landmark Brooklyn Public Library Grand Army Plaza Central Branch. It is my recommendation that the library catalog this book, and place it on their shelf where it can be shared by many readers. In this way, Mr. Powell’s magnificent book will be automatically added to The World Catalog of Books which is the greatest honor a writer can ever have.

It was my pleasure to review Mr. Powell’s book and recommend it very highly.

Sincerely, 
Irene Brodsky

Faculty Member Brooklyn College City University of New York
Teacher of Philosophy – adult education program
author of Poetry Unplugged
and The Adventures of Silly Kitty, Princess Jasmine and First Puppy

🔳 A New Way of Writing
By Isagani R. Cruz on March 5, 2010
Format: Paperback

The Tunnel at the End of Time is a masterful symphony of languages, religions, cultures, and literary techniques, all journeying to one inevitable destination: the individual wrestling with self. Covering our most human to our most divine urges and activities, the poetic, science fictional, experimental, even cinematic book leads us through words to what is beyond or behind words: the inscrutable mystery of our own being or, more precisely since the book revels in Emptiness, our non-being. In the process of stripping away the several skins that we use to protect our inner selves and to keep us from exercising our freedom to live a full life, the book also comments on writing itself, turning itself inside out, so to speak, so that we are forced as readers to become the writers themselves, merging our selves with theirs without meaning to and without remembering the meaning that we wanted to find, finding ourselves apparently in the future but actually in the present, or even more precisely, in the past, as time stops for us. In the end, the future humans, aliens, and angels turn out to be really us today, as we find ourselves aliens within ourselves, alienated not from the world as lesser writers would have put it, but from ourselves, as only the truly alive realize, perhaps as only angels really know. For those less inclined towards philosophy, the book offers gripping suspense, continuous action, and provocative scenes; the narrative scaffolding, however, is there only to lead readers to deeper levels of reading. I recommend this book to everyone honest enough to admit that we do not know ourselves or that we are not just nothing, but perhaps even Nothingness itself. Have fun, but be warned!

🔳 Powell’s great interest in spiritual alchemy and extra-sensory world inspired him to write THE TUNNEL AT THE END OF TIME
By Dr. Karunesh Kumar Agrawal on September 8, 2012
Format: Paperback

Powell’s great interest in spiritual alchemy and extra-sensory world inspired him to write THE TUNNEL AT THE END OF TIME (Feb 2010) in collaboration with Rick Davis, the follow-up novella to 2014 with a poetic introduction by both Powell and Azsacra Zarathustra a poetic dialogue with the Russian artist/author Azsacra Zarathustra, entitled: “Transforma und Vrebatima,” an English-Russian poetic follow-up to “2014: the life and adventures of an incarnated angel” TRANSFORMA UND VREBATIMA is an epic poem, written by Azsacra Zarathustra (Russia) and Adam Donaldson Powell (Norway), primarily in English and Russian.

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“Creating art and literature requires a creative imagination as well as the ability to get things done in a disciplined manner. Live in the moment, and plan for tomorrow.”
— Adam Donaldson Powell

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SHORT AUTHOR BIO:

ADAM DONALDSON POWELL (Norway) is a multilingual author, literary critic, and art photography critic; and a professional visual artist. He has published several literary books (including collections of poetry, short stories, and novellas, two science fiction novels, and essays) in the USA, Norway and India; as well as numerous works in international literary publications on several continents. He writes in English, Spanish, French and Norwegian. He has previously authored theatrical works performed onstage, and he has read his poetry at venues in New York City (USA), Oslo (Norway), Buenos Aires (Argentina), and Kathmandu (Nepal). His book “Gaytude” (co-authored with Albert Russo) won the 2009 National Indie Excellence Award in the category gay/lesbian non-fiction. Powell was also the winner of the Azsacra International Poetry Award in 2008, and the recipient of a Norwegian Foreign Ministry travel stipend for authors in 2005. Powell also took initiative to planning and organizing the “Words – one path to peace and understanding” international literary festival in Oslo, Norway in 2008. He has been an author under the Cyberwit label since 2005, and he has published 12 literary books since 1987.

 

CHECK OUT:

MY GOODREADS AUTHOR PAGE: HERE!

MY AMAZON.COM AUTHOR PAGE: HERE!

MY CYBERWIT.NET AUTHOR PAGE: HERE!

PERSONAL STATEMENT ABOUT EXTREME ART AND LITERATURE:

“Extreme literature” can be philosophical, political, religious, sexually-oriented, profane, or just downright ‘dangerous’ because it rocks others’ boat(s) personally. Not all literature is “pretty”, and even humour can be considered provocative. Many authors have works they (and others) consider to be “extreme”. All throughout the history of art and literature, artists and writers have pressed against and played with society’s tolerances – in both “liberal” epochs, “conservative” epochs and (as now) in states of “moral confusion”, where Western concepts of freedom of speech sometimes butt against national and local cultural mores and social politics; and where danger lurks and thrives on non-specific and situational social codes and fears.

The concept of ‘EXTREME ART AND LITERATURE’ changes all the time. What is actually ‘extreme’ today – in a mixture of globalised, regionalised, nationalised and localised perspectives? My own opinion is that ‘extreme art and literature’ today takes its starting point in the accepted banalities of everyday life, experiences and consciousness on the respective and combined levels (social, philosophical, political, economical, sexual and spiritual). Contemporary ‘extreme art / literature’ no longer attempts to shock in an obvious way, but rather entices the public to feel that he / she is a ‘member’ of the experiential understanding and consciousness, only to interject a “triggering” aspect that creates a sense of uncomfortableness caused by the realization that one has been busted by a banality. These “trigger mechanisms” are (in fact) integral parts of the art itself – often passing by in fleeting moments, sometimes blended in with an obsessive and “flat” (journalistic or photojournalistic) expression or a long tirade of banalities that do not even pretend to be surrealistic. These small “electrical shock” triggers will hopefully ignite an inner experience within the public so that the viewer / reader begins to investigate his / her own personal reality, his / her actual contributions to a collective reality and hopefully to re-evaluate his / her own concept of what one prefers to create as an individual and collective reality. The illusion of spiritual and emotion separation (the illusion that we are all separate, individual and self-sustaining entities that can determine our roles on Terra or in the Interlife totally without contact or influence with / from others) is a vital element here, and that common illusion is therefore “fertile ground” for artists. Here we artists and authors can play, provoke, prevaricate, entice, seduce and fool the audience to believe in us as a part of “themselves”, and then trigger the reader / viewer to consider the possibility that there might be (in fact) a miscommunication or misconception running loose … a sense of everyday reality that is inconsistent or which has consequences that one was never aware of.

Perhaps the most meaningful and interactive way to help another person to ‘wake up’ from their perceptual drowsiness is to enter into their everyday dreams and illusions (their banalities) and suddenly say “BOO !!!” Artists and authors who attempt to shock through their art with the blatantly obvious, often thus fail to explore and exploit the deeper, symbolic depths of the subconscious and the more mystical elements that make up our everyday and banal thoughts, activities, attitudes etc., and therefore are denied “personal access” by some viewers / readers who may consider the art to be too intellectual, too elitist, too directly confrontational, or too foreign. Sex and religion are often used today in art and literature as “shock elements”. It is not necessarily sex or religion which are provocative or interesting in themselves, but rather the unspoken and quietly accepted perceptions that we chain ourselves to unquestionably, and which can totally be set in chaos just by the artist and author changing or adding one simple element or context that we do not feel belongs in our reality-defining “picture”.

‘Extreme art and literature’ is thus not blatantly provocative in itself; it rather shows the audience the possible ramifications of acceptance, non-involvement, personal meanings and behaviour by confronting us with triggered or mixed in ‘extreme’ moments, and then lets the audience choose to begin its own personal creative life process of evalution and re-creation (if desired) … without commentary or guidance.

When I recently presented myself to Marina Abramovic as a “retired activist” she responded by asking me if an activist can ever be finished with activism. Of course, she is right. The process of rebellion is nothing more than one intermittent set of activities and actions in a constant redefining and assertion of the Self, both individually and collectively. Art is the ultimate expression of the process of rebellion. If an artist loses that quality, he/she “dies” in a certain way. My art and literature are not just extensions of me … they are my created persona: a sweet mixture of heaven and hell, with a pinch of mediocrity for flavoring.

Adam Donaldson Powell, Norway

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NEWS! EXCITING NEW BOOK NOW AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD ON AMAZON.COM AS PAPERBACK, AS WELL AS AN E-BOOK:

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“ENTRE NOUS ET EUX” is my latest book, and it is now available in print form at Amazon.com: ENTRE NOUS ET EUX – CONTES DE FÉES POUR ADULTES, 347 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-93-85945-48-9, © 2017, India (LGBT – Novellas and poetry, Fairytales for adults – in English, French, Spanish and Norwegian).

Purchase the e-book version online here  ⤵️
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this book is
dedicated
to my Rodo

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BOOK FOREWORD BY ALBERT RUSSO

If there is one poet who will mark this 21st century, I ask you, dear reader and lover of literature, to discover, or rediscover an artist named Adam Donaldson Powell. I use both words purposely: literature and art, because this “Esprit Universel” is a multi-talented man who excels in whatever discipline he tackles: poetry, fiction, essays, photography, painting, and goodness knows what else. He probably has other hidden secrets that will enchant the aesthete, once he pulls them out of his magic hat. By the way, he also writes in several languages. And proficiently, what’s more! 

It is much too restrictive to call Adam Donaldson Powell a gay poet, or gay whatever. And yet, he describes love, gay or not, with the most sensual, elegant, compassionate, but also at times crude, vengeful and downright poisonous words. He wears ‘no gloves’ as the French say, when it comes to telling a story – yes, his poems have themes too, which makes them reachable to the adult public, even to those who don’t care much for poetry – of abused children, scorned transvestites, sons and daughters of mixed blood, or prostitutes who are prey to the most despicable whoremongers, roaming the streets of every capital and city, large and small, of our planet. But, oh lovers of beauty and eroticism of the finest quality, delve into some of his romantic poems and you will dream that you are the hero or the heroine of these verses! It has often been my case. 

There are millions of scribblers on the Net who think they are poets. Some excellent poets do exist, but here I urge you to read these humble lines, for you will never regret having tasted the equal of our century’s Verlaine, Rimbaud or Baudelaire. Adam Donaldson Powell’s own FLEURS DU MAL are flowers to be treasured a lifetime. 

  • Albert Russo 2017

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➡️ ADAM DONALDSON POWELL’S AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE ⬅️

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MY PUBLICATION HISTORY:

I have published various literary works: poems, stories, novellas/short novels, literary criticism, essays, art photography criticism; and also work with painting and photography. I was born in the USA, and reside in Norway. I have been a professional visual artist (since 1995) and a writer (since 1987). I have published 12 books, in USA, Norway and India, as well as 4 e-books and several short works in literary publications. Among my many literary and artistic themes are multilingualism, the transcultural, spiritual development, societal development, LGBT issues, hiv/aids etc. I have written, performed and published works in English, Spanish, French and Norwegian. My poetry and essays have been translated into several languages, including: Spanish, French, Russian, Japanese and Bengali.

I have had one-man and group exhibitions at art galleries and public institutions in Norway and Sweden. My art serves as book cover art and internet art as well as fine art.

Adam’s profile at Saatchi Online Gallery

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MY TWO LATEST PRINT BOOK PUBLICATIONS:

“ENTRE NOUS ET EUX” is my latest book, and it is now available in print form at Amazon.com: ENTRE NOUS ET EUX – CONTES DE FÉES POUR ADULTES, 347 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-93-85945-48-9, © 2017, India (LGBT – Novellas and poetry, Fairytales for adults – in English, French, Spanish and Norwegian).

The e-book is already available at amazon.com:

Purchase the e-book version online now ⤵️
ebookcover

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SEE MY AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE: AT AMAZON!

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My book “JISEI” is available for orders at CYBERWIT and AMAZON.COM

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Paperback: 245 pages
Publisher: Cyberwit.net (May 2, 2013)
Languages: English, French, Spanish, Norwegian, Japanese, Russian, Filipino
ISBN-10: 8182534038
ISBN-13: 978-8182534032

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COMMENTS ABOUT “JISEI” FROM AUTHORS AROUND THE WORLD:

J. Richard “Rick” Davis (USA):

This book of poetry, is more than just a collection of poems, on life, death, and AIDS. It is a guidebook for anyone struggling with the meaning of it all – whether it’s AIDS, or cancer or any travail that is causing one to question the meaning and purpose of why we’re on this planet.

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Albert Russo (FRANCE):

Qui est Adam Donaldson Powell? Ce poète rare qui parle de la beauté, de l’amour, de l’amitié, comme l’homme découvrant le monde à l’aube de l’humanité. Avec angélisme, direz-vous? Aucunement, il en parle avec la poésie du philosophe et du mystique. Il traite la maladie et la mort, non comme des ennemies, mais comme des connaissances, avec sérénité, presque avec sympathie, il va même jusqu’à causer avec elles comme l’on cause avec des passagers lors d’un voyage. Il se mets même à blaguer avec ces trublions, sachant qu’au bout du compte, il retrouvera la dernière.

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Maria Cristina Azcona (ARGENTINA):

Adam es el esclavo líbero, el que rompió las cadenas y nos golpea con su martillo de oro las nuestras, incluso aquellas que volvemos a crear a cada momento, enfermos pero de la cabeza mientras él, enfermo del cuerpo está cada vez mejor de la lucidez mental, cada vez más cuerdo y descarnado. Su poesía es cada vez más aleteo y menos cuerpo, más alma y menos carne, más verdad y más arte hasta que llegará el momento ese sublime en que el hombre se hará poema, para siempre, en nuestra mente que ahora, tarde, podrá ver en el interior de su alma.

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Lisbet Norderhaug (NORWAY):

I disse vidunderlige, dype og mørke diktene kan vi synke inn i oss selv og la oss treffe av lyset som gjennomstråler mørket. Adam har satt ord på den gjenkjennelige fortvilelsen over å måtte forlate livet, men han beskriver også gløden som skinner til oss fra den andre siden. Han har hevet, ja, transformert, historien om ett menneskes dødsprosess til en sang for oss alle.

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EXCERPT FROM BOOK INTRODUCTION:

AIDS has changed the world in more ways than we may possibly know. We will never fully comprehend the impact of losing so many people taken by this disease. Their contributions could have altered the face of humanity, the world of art and literature, the rearing of future leaders, the impact on communities, and the hearts of countless individuals. And this is all looking at the impact of AIDS in a broad perspective. It is a disease that, regardless of our own personal admissions, affects us all. However, behind the public fray of communal loss, social change and medical advances, lies the experience of the individual who must still awaken each day with the acknowledgment that they carry inside of them an evident ticking time bomb. No different from the rest of us who live with our own mortality, but distinct in that their clock has a name. That name is AIDS.

— Christina Landles-Cobb (USA)

COMMENT BY THE AUTHOR:
My first public performance of my poetry in New York City was at a trendy art gallery in the SoHo district, back in 1986. The place was packed, wall-to-wall, and the audience was enthusiastic. I was reading from my soon-to-be-published first book of poems, entitled “Notes of a Madman” which was an illustrated collection of mystical poetry from Pagan and Sufi traditions. The gallery owner, an enigmatic young man, was particularly obsessed with the poems and spiritual messages in the slender volume of verse, and he read the book over and over again. Some months after the reading I again called the gallery to say “hello” and another young man answered the phone, saying in a somber voice: “Didn’t you know? He passed away shortly after your reading.” He had died of AIDS.

That beautiful young man hung onto my verse in a time of deep personal transformation. I have never forgotten the awe and sense of responsibility I felt after that telephone conversation. Since then, I have always written and painted with the intent of inspiring creativity and transformation in humanity. And now that I have — myself — lived with the AIDS virus for twenty years it feels appropriate to inspire once again through writing about one of the greatest transformations Mankind can ever know. It does not matter what we die of … every Soul and Life Expression is precious, and to be celebrated.

I die (and I am reborn) just a little bit each day of my life. Should any given moment be my last, then my epitaph will surely be the sum of all my thoughts, poems and tears of joy and sorrow … from day to day, over the course of eternity. Perhaps just one of these short daily poems will touch upon a few readers and lend a bit of realization of the magic that each of us creates in our personal and collective transformations.

– Adam Donaldson Powell

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The tunnel at the end of time (co-written with Rick Davis and Azsacra Zarathustra), Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-160-4, © 2010, India (LGBT – gay characters, extreme sci-fi).

REVIEW BY DR. ISAGANI R. CRUZ, THE PHILIPPINES:

The Tunnel at the End of Time is a masterful symphony of languages, religions, cultures, and literary techniques, all journeying to one inevitable destination: the individual wrestling with self. Covering our most human to our most divine urges and activities, the poetic, science fictional, experimental, even cinematic book leads us through words to what is beyond or behind words: the inscrutable mystery of our own being or, more precisely since the book revels in Emptiness, our non-being. In the process of stripping away the several skins that we use to protect our inner selves and to keep us from exercising our freedom to live a full life, the book also comments on writing itself, turning itself inside out, so to speak, so that we are forced as readers to become the writers themselves, merging our selves with theirs without meaning to and without remembering the meaning that we wanted to find, finding ourselves apparently in the future but actually in the present, or even more precisely, in the past, as time stops for us. In the end, the future humans, aliens, and angels turn out to be really us today, as we find ourselves aliens within ourselves, alienated not from the world as lesser writers would have put it, but from ourselves, as only the truly alive realize, perhaps as only angels really know. For those less inclined towards philosophy, the book offers gripping suspense, continuous action, and provocative scenes; the narrative scaffolding, however, is there only to lead readers to deeper levels of reading. I recommend this book to everyone honest enough to admit that we do not know ourselves or that we are not just nothing, but perhaps even Nothingness itself. Have fun, but be warned!

MY RECENT AND PREVIOUS PRINT BOOK PUBLICATIONS:

ENTRE NOUS ET EUX – CONTES DE FÉES POUR ADULTES, 347 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-93-85945-48-9, © 2017, India (LGBT – Novellas and poetry, Fairytales for adults – in English, French, Spanish and Norwegian).

Jisei: death poems and daily reflections by a person with AIDS, 246 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-403-2, © 2013, India (LGBT – HIV/AIDS).

The tunnel at the end of time, 233 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-160-4, © 2010, India (LGBT – gay characters, extreme sci-fi).

Malerier og fotokunst, is a short 38-page retrospective overview of some of Adam Donaldson Powell’s best known oil paintings and photographic art works. Published by Cyberwit.net as a special limited and numbered full-color, soft cover edition (55 copies only), ISBN 978-81-8253-154-3, India, © 2009.

Gaytude: a poetic journey around the world, gay poetry in English and French by Albert Russo and Adam Donaldson Powell, 335 pages, published by Xlibris Corporation, © 2009, Library of Congress Control Number: 2008907964, ISBN: Hardcover 978-1-4363-6396-9, ISBN: Softcover 978-1-4363-6395-2, USA (LGBT).

KASSA’S REVIEW OF GAYTUDE:

Gaytude is a collection of poetry that appears in English in the first half and then translated into French for the second half of the book. There is also a collection of pictures depicting homoerotic images throughout history as well as personal images of Albert Russo. The timelessness of these pictures is repeated as a theme within the elegant and often poignant poetry collected. The authors are two very accomplished writers who tackle a wide variety of subjects and themes that affect gay men with surprising depth and meaning. These topics will hit home especially for like-minded individuals but anyone with compassion will understand the beauty and heartache these issues bring to mind.

The poetry is divided by region of the globe, from Africa to Americas to Europe and Asia. The variety of styles changes from short and simple to longer, and even haiku. The tone runs from sweet, sexy, and often humorous to intense and moving. Frequently the language of Russo’s poetry is simple and direct, taking away nothing from the intensity of the message and meaning, yet easy for even the most novice reader to connect and appreciate. Russo’s creativity is unquestionable as he spans numerous taboo subjects and makes no apologies for his desires or sensuality. These themes range from open sexuality to disease, hypocrisy and violence; including one nightstands to long-term relationships, breakups, makeups and admiration of the male form.

An example of Russo’s poignant writing is from Prayer:

“let him love that boy
without shame;
let him love him
in broad daylight
for his sentiments are
stronger than
your malicious gossip,
more generous than
your shrunken hearts”

Blending well is Powell’s poetry, which has elegance to the words and gives weight to each one, seeming as if nothing is wasted. Not a thought, an idea or a desire is anything more than necessary as he speaks of a love he yearns for. Yet Powell also delivers strongly worded poems regarding the hypocrisy of governments, penis enlargement spam emails, prostitutes, and casual violence. A great example is this excerpt from Let’s Get Something Straight:

And for God’s sake don’t you ever
Tell anyone about this…
(if you know what is best for you)
Agreed ? Good ! Now ‘manhandle’ me bitch…

There are few topics these authors feared to invite in for speculation ~ transsexuals, persecution, random sex, AIDS, family pressure, lies, promiscuity, marriage, children, oppression, prejudice, orgies. Taken together this is a look into the lives of any and every gay men and the issues they deal with that create an aura of “different” around them. This celebration of gay life spans globally and encompasses all aspects proudly and openly.

Gaytude is a wonderful collection by two powerful authors that have offered thoughts on timeless themes. Although I can’t claim to be an authority on poetry and perhaps the authors themselves will cringe at my amateur review, I hope to have captured the spirit of this collection.

DR. SANTOSH KUMAR’S CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF GAYTUDE:

A review of GAYTUDE: a poetic journey around the world / Tour du monde poetique, bilingual poetry by Albert Russo and Adam Donaldson Powell – Xlibris 2009, 335 pages.

Book orders – 888.795.4274 -Orders@xlibris.com

Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4363-6395-2 – $22.99
Hardback ISBN: 978-1-4363-6396-9 – $32.99

Library of Congress Number: 2008907964

Albert Russo and Adam Donaldson Powells Gaytude, a poetic journey around the world, makes it evident that the gay poems always have a distinctive voice, because a gay poet suffers from a sense of ostracism, of being excluded by others due to difference. The tradition of celebrating Platonic friendship with a boy has always been there in world poetry. Gay poetry from Sappho to Michelangelo has always idealized the homoerotic world. Catullus (ca. 84-54) loved sex with young men.

Shakespeare’s sonnets have been described as gay sonnets by several critics. It is well known that Derek Jarmans film The Angelic Conversation (1985) shows gay elements in Shakespeares sonnets. Lord Alfred Douglass gay poems appeared in 1896 in English and French translations. In the twentieth century two great poets: W..H. Auden and Ginsberg wrote gay poems. The publication of The Penguin Book of Homosexual Verse (1983) reveals its popularity and marketing needs. It is difficult to agree with the critics who condemn Whitmans gay poetry. The Boston Intelligencer declared that Whitman deserved no better reward than the lash for vulgarity and violation of decency. Both Whitmans Leaves and Emersons laudation had a common origin in temporary insanity (Bucke 201). Walt Whitman is as unacquainted with art as a hog with mathematics (Canby 327). One should never forget that according to several biographers Whitman did not engage in sexual relations with men.

It is true that a poets gay identity does not quite fit into the traditional morality of the world. This is the main reason behind vituperative hostility towards homoeroticism and gay-themed poems. But one may remember Nietzsches assertion that sexuality extends up to the very pinnacle of the soul. The queerness of Russo and Powell both to stand at a different angle to the universe, their desire for an outsider image, and a subversive quality enticing them to overthrow conventions makes Gaytude a classic. Taboo creates its own power and energy in a creative work like Gaytude. This is also true about other gay writers such as Walt Whitman, Elizabeth Bishop and James Merrill. Russo is a great poet with a passionate impulse, and he expresses it with a natural intensity devoid of any kind of laborious artistry:

I shall spoil you as no lover
Ever has or will

(SURPRISE PARTY, 35).

As we made love
Our bodies were on fire
You were insatiable
I was submissive

(ONE-NIGHT STAND, 102)

Russo does not hanker after limited joy but rather for the illimitable in the loveliness of the human body. Due to his ardor, he bursts with joy:

Our bodies commingle
In a Pacific splash of ecstasy

(UNDERCURRENTS, 42).

Russo tries to forget the stern realities of life, and his idealized love seems to be the only permanent reality for him on the altar of passion, he has chosen to fall off the cliff although there are several obstructions:

Theres his age, you see
And theres my career, too
Then theres that awesome responsibility
Towards my class
Towards society
And I am highly respected by my peers
Yet, my attraction to him is gravitational
One of these days,
I shall fall off the cliff

NO TRESPASSING, 51

The above lines are a testimony to the fact that Russo arrives at the complexity by accumulating a number of concrete images interfering with his fantasy, and this fantasy is intensified in the last line revealing the utmost limits of passion, not obliterated by the terrestrial impediments. Russos poems in Gaytude are marked by a tremendous burst of creativity.

Adam Donaldson Powells poems reveal that the poets mind and imagination are fused with the white heat of ardor. He is obsessed with two moths / Playing with fire (BLADE, 24). In his poem IDENTITY, Powell expresses his desire to be loved, and looked up to. He seems to be in the quest for the sumum bonum of life, that immortal instant and great moment which will unravel his identity. With quiet determination, Powell declares:

I want a real lover
Like Arthur Rimbaud or Jean Genet
And I want him now

PUNK, 61

Powell shows such a deep and lofty feeling as to be in love with love (STILL HORNY, 153). This is the state of the lover as Powell depicts it. Apart from love, nothing else in life is significant. Such is the consecrated passion of the poet that he is able to write with such ecstatic outbursts:

Creamy overcast skies,
Thick as yoghurt,
Remind me of
Youand me

CREAMY OVERCAST SKIES 154

Setting the real world at nought, Powell decides to thrive on the diet of surrealism by

the technique of transference:
Real briefly becomes surreal,
Through transference

INSTANT RECALL 88

In another poem, Powell expresses his inner heart in reacting against monstrous mechanization. The present climate is not in favour of rich heritage. Individual isolation in an / Out-of-control jungle (149) is the sordid gift of modern heritage marked by Wars, / Lies, /Plastic reality-show idols, Virus, / Global warming, /Uncertainty, /And all too easy access to drugs (HERITAGE? RIGHT! 149).

The poems by Russo and Powell are marked by outsiderhood, the sense of being different from a fashionable or straight mode of writing. Walter Pater aptly comments that in the poetry of Dante Gabriel Rossetti the dream-land with its phantoms of the body, deftly coming and going on loves service, is to him, in no mere fancy or figure of speech, a real country, a veritable expansion or addition to our waking life (Pater 223). This comment is fully applicable to the poems in Gaytude by Russo and Powell. Gaytude, bilingual poetry at its best, written, translated and adapted by Russo and Powell, also includes wonderful photographs by Russo. Several poems of Russo included in Gaytude were first published in the poets own French version in the collection Tour du monde de la poesie gay (2005). The poems in English, Italian and Spanish have been translated and adapted into French by Russo. The poems in French have been translated and adapted by both Russo and Powell.

Works Cited

Russo, Albert & Adam Donaldson Powell, Gaytude. Xlibris Corporation, 2009.
Pater, Walter. Appreciations. London: Macmillan, 1931.
Bucke, R. M. Walt Whitman, Philadelphia, McRay,1883.
Canby, H. S. Walt Whitman, N. Y. Literary Classics, 1943.

Santosh Kumar (b. 1946) is a poet, short-story writer and an editor from UP India; DPhil in English; Editor of Taj Mahal Review and Harvests of New Millennium Journals; several awards; member of World Poets Society (W.P.S.); member of World Haiku Association, Japan; presented papers in the seminar, interviews as special guest at international literary festival WORDS – one path to peace and understanding Oslo, Norway in September 2008; published poetry in Indian Verse by Young Poets (1980), World Poetry (1995 & 1996), The Fabric of A Vision (2001), The Still Horizon (2002), The Golden Wings (2002), Voyages (2003), Symphonies (2003), New Pegasus (2004), Explorers (2004), Dwan (USA), Promise (Purple Rose Publications, USA), Taj Mahal Review (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 & 2008). He has also edited sixteen World Poetry Anthologies, and four books of World’s Great Short Stories. He is also the author of a collection of poems entitled Helicon (Cyberwit , India , ISBN 81-901366-8-2), Haiku collection New Utopia (Rochak Publishing , India ISBN 978-81-903812-0-8), and Critical Essays in collaboration with Adam Donaldson Powell (Cyberwit , India , 978-81-8253-110-9).

AdamSelfieJune

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PREVIOUS BOOK PUBLICATIONS – continued:
GAYTUDE WAS THE 2009 NATIONAL INDIE EXCELLENCE AWARD WINNER FOR THE CATEGORY GAY/LESBIAN NONFICTION!

2014: the life and adventures of an incarnated angel, 135 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-118-5, © 2008, India (LGBT – gay characters, extreme sci-fi).

Critical Essays, literary and photobook criticism by Adam Donaldson Powell and Dr. Santosh Kumar, 108 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-110-9, © 2008, India.

Le Paradis (Paradise), 80 pages, Cyberwit.net, ISBN 978-81-8253-103-1, © 2008, India. Includes a booklet with symbols from The Universal Language of Light, as seen by Laila Holand.

Rapture: endings of space and time (86 pages), Cyberwit,net, ISBN 978-81-8253-083-6, © 2007, India.

Three-legged Waltz, (80 pages), Cyberwit.net, ISBN 818253058X, © 2006, India.

Collected Poems and Stories, (175 pages), Cyberwit.net, ISBN 8182530288, © 2005, India.

Arcana and other archetypes, (special limited edition – hardback collection of poetry, 80 pages), AIM Chapbooks ANS, © 2001, Norway (now out-of-print).

Notes of a Madman, (hardback collection of poetry, 35 pages), Winston-Derek Publishers, Inc., © 1987, ISBN 1-55523-054-7, USA (now out-of-print).

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Other publication experience (selected):

Essays, literary criticism and photobook criticism by Adam Donaldson Powell have appeared in many literary magazines, literary websites, newspapers etc., including but not limited to: Small Press Review, Ginyu, Los Muestros, Inyathi, Lynx Online Literary Magazine, Skyline Review, Taj Mahal Review, Samora Magazine, Kritya: a journal of poetry, Writer’s Cramp, Portugal News, Skyline Magazine’s and Hudson View Poetry Digest’s literary criticism website etc. Adam has reviewed many talented authors and art photography book artists, including: Albert Russo, Pradip Choudhuri, Jan Oskar Hansen, Shirley Bolstok, Robert P. Craig, Mary Barnet, Literary House Review 2007, Orania Hamilton, AZsacra Zarathustra and Jgor Pyatinin, Geert Verbeke, Barbara Elizabeth Mercer, Alan D. Busch, Fernando Rodríguez, Victoria Valentine, Vijaiganga, Marie Mappley, Robert M. Wilson, Linda A. Peters, Ban’ya Natsuishi, Sayumi Kamakura, Moshé Liba, T. Wignesan etc.

Adam has written prefaces for books, and edited novels and books of poetry, as well as individual poems and short stories, written by several other authors.

Adam’s own literary works and artworks have appeared in several literary reviews and journals, anthologies, online magazines, literary websites etc. on several continents.

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Distinctions and memberships:

GAYTUDE WAS THE 2009 NATIONAL INDIE EXCELLENCE AWARD WINNER FOR THE CATEGORY GAY/LESBIAN NONFICTION!

Adam Donaldson Powell på Wikipedia Norge

Steering committee, WORDS: one path to peace and understanding, Oslo, 2008. Read the ONLINE REPORT.

Winner of the AZsacra International Poetry Award, 2008

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Recipient of Norwegian Foreign Ministry’s travel stipend for authors, 2005.

QUOTE:

“There is no doubt that Powell, Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Bishop, Sylvia Plath, John Berryman, Randall Jarrell, and Delmore Schwartz are the most talented American poets of the modern age.” — Dr. Santosh Kumar, Allahabad University, 2010, from his book entitled: Adam Donaldson Powell: the making of a poet.

ABOVE QUOTE FROM A BOOK BY DR. SANTOSH KUMAR, INDIA:
“Adam Donaldson Powell: The Making of a Poet”, a critical analysis of the published works of Adam Donaldson Powell. Order the book from Cyberwit.net: NOW!

Read excerpts from this book HERE!

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MEMBER OF:
BONO
World Poets Society
Poetas del Mundo
Norwegian P.E.N.
Bilingual MCA
IFLAC-Argentina

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DEGREES AND EDUCATION:
New York University, Master of Public Administration, 1985.
Goddard College, Bachelor of Arts, 1974.
Language studies in Norwegian, Spanish and French in the USA and Norway.
Post-graduate studies in international business administration (BI School of Management).
Private piano studies with several renowned concert pianists, including: Jacob Lateiner, Arminda Canteros, Berenice Lipsen-Grüzen and John Ranck.

Adam Donaldson Powell and Cathy Craig

(Violin-Piano duo: Catherine Craig and Adam Donaldson Powell, NYC; photo courtesy of Catherine Craig.)

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POETRY PERFORMANCE:

Adam has performed his poetry in English, French, Spanish and Norwegian, and at various venues from New York City to Oslo to Buenos Aires to Kathmandu.

(above photo courtesy Blikk Magazine, Norway)

SLIDESHOW: ADAM IN PICTURES

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MY FIRST TWO POETRY BOOKS:

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Notes of a Madman
Winston-Derek Publishers, USA
ISBN 1-55523-054-7
1987

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Arcana and other archetypes
AiM Chapbooks, Norway
2001

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MY LIFE AS AN ACTIVIST.

My own activist career began when I was a teenager, and – in spite of both my parents being careerists in the United States Air Force – I became an anti-war activist (Vietnam War) and conscientious objector. That activism had many expressions: from silent Quaker vigils to anti-war marches and rallies to getting thrown out of the courtroom of Judge Julius Hoffman (famous from the «Chicago Seven» trials) for civil disobedience while supporting a draft dodger. My activism has including working as an employee of organizations such as the American Friends Service Committee (a Quaker social service and peace education organization), the Partnership for the Homeless, Amnesty International Norway etc., working for the Norwegian government in support of the unemployed, immigrants, the disabled etc., establishing my own activist organizations in Norway in support of immigrants, artists/authors/dancers/actors/filmmakers, and also representing organizations that lobby for the rights of persons with HIV/AIDS. Being an activist has required me to constantly weigh whether my own convictions and interests are best served by working for or representing an existing organization, political parties, agency or institution OR working alone so that I may set my own specific agenda and choose my own methods of working. The latter has given me special satisfaction. In that regard I have used my talents as a speechwriter and public speaker, as a book author, as a musician, as a linguist, and as a visual artist to promote my ideas and my support for those who do not themselves have the possibility of getting their voices heard publicly. In 1994 I arranged Norway’s first World AIDS Day art exhibition (a tradition which I kept going until 2009), I have promoted the rights of immigrants and of performing, literary and visual artists, and debated with top politicians in Norway on television, radio and in the tabloids, I have represented persons with HIV/AIDS on behalf of the Norwegian government and otherwise at UNGASS (United Nations General Assembly Special Session – Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS) as well as at international conferences in Norway and in other countries, I have initiated one-man protest demonstrations against individuals and government agencies that I felt abused the dignity or rights of the disabled and persons with HIV/AIDS, etc.; and I have been critical of other individual activists, government institutions, politicians, and also of activist organizations in the media. At times I have also worked within the «system», and as an advisor and cooperative partner to the system, and publicly defended specific government policies, and I have held office in a major political party. All this after personal analysis of the best ways to bring my activist ideas into government and organizational policy frameworks.

All my formal education and life experience comes into play in my activism: including my master degree in international and developmental public administration, my years of working for the government in Norway and as a university administrator and corporate writer/editor in the United States, and even my college bachelor of arts thesis (on the legal rights of minors {young persons} to consent to acquisition of contraceptives and to psychological counseling) which resulted in my own draft legislation eventually becoming state law in Vermont, and then later in Ohio.

I have also served on the board of directors of several organizations in Norway and in the USA which work in the areas of LGBT rights, the rights and needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS, the arts, and religious expression. And finally, I have organized international conferences for persons working in support of persons living with HIV/AIDS, as well as international and bilingual authors. I have held many speeches and been a high-profile spokesperson at conferences and in the media, and my visual art exhibitions and my authored books often address themes related to my areas of activism.

My most current expression of activism involves supporting and informing others through social media and the internet, as well as in my visual art and in my work as an author and editor – herein encouraging the voices of contemporary activists through literature.

~ Adam Donaldson Powell

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Disposable art in times of overabundance and waste.

World society is in sore need of more creativity, and the influx of aspiring artists, authors, musicians, filmmakers etc. with both professional and hobby aspirations is a good thing. Right?!! Of course it is, but …

What do we do with all that art, with all the books that are discarded or never sold, with libraries and bookstores that no longer have physical shelves to accommodate old and new books, with old lp’s, cassette tapes and cd’s? And shouldn’t art also sometimes make a statement about the overabundance and waste that characterises today’s world society, and the challenges it presents in terms of waste management, pollution, and the driving down of prices and the value of new art, writing and music? Sure, great for the consumers that prices are ridiculously low now for music, books, art etc., but surely that only breeds more and more “fast art” and copies being pumped out in order to increase income. And then, of course, more waste.

The disposable art movement is not dead, even though it is not as “trendy” as it was several years ago. Disposable art, and art that incorporates disposable, used and found objects has been around for awhile. One famous example is Marcel Duchamp’s “Fountain” (1917), a urinal (signed R. Mutt). READ HERE!

Today, Cheeming Boey’s disposable coffee cup art is all the rage: READ HERE!

Even so, many are skeptical to disposable art and to art which has no real lasting commercial value. Some want art that is “permanent” and that can be sold later at a huge profit, and others have aesthetic objections. Here is an article by Andrew O’Hagan entitled “Losing patience with disposable art”.

And then there is the work of fine art photographer Jerry Takigawa, who uses disposed objects in his exhibitions to contemplate our disposable society: SEE HERE!

Not all art needs to be “high art”, and certainly not all disposable art or found object art. Not all art needs to last a hundred years or more, either. It is my philosophy that art should eventually be recirculated, moved around in our living and working environments, sold, loaned out, exchanged for new works that help to enrich and enliven ourselves and our environments in new ways etc. That headset requires a different approach to the “value and function” of art.

The comments of some who dislike such art, eg. “I could have done that.” Or “My child could have done that!” are as “disposable” as the art itself. The point being that they did not do it, they did not come up with the idea or execute it. Art is largely conceptual. If an artwork helps you to question the value and function of art, life or the state of the world, then it is highly successful.

I have made artworks involving painted pieces of concrete, painted pieces of driftwood, plastic, weather-worn discarded pieces of styrofoam, and more. Here are a few of my own disposable art pieces / pieces made from disposed of and found objects:

Stone fragment. Oil painting on styrofoam (disposable art).

Stone fragment. Oil painting on styrofoam (disposable art).

Stop the genocide! (Oil on linen).

Stop the genocide! (Oil on linen napkin that resembles nazi prison uniform cloth).

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(photography of found semi-deflated balloons hanging on tree.)

 

“Hands”, 30×30 cm., oil and charcoal on cardboard, 2017. “Hands”: Disposable art – fighting against the wear and tear of age, physicality, and the urges to hold on vs. to eventually let go.

 

 

Discover Adam on Amazon and at Saatchi Art.

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Adam’s books on AMAZON.COM

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IEx_goldoval_winner

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See Adam’s paintings and art photographs on SAATCHI ART

Stone fragment. Oil painting on styrofoam (disposable art).

Stone fragment. Oil painting on styrofoam (disposable art).

My oil paintings

View a selection of my oil paintings and photography at SAATCHI ONLINE

 

Photography by Adam Donaldson Powell.

 

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SEE PHOTO-DOCUMENTATION OF STREET ART / GRAFFITI IN OSLO, NORWAY:

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Street art images from the Frogner neighbourhood (Oslo).

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Street images from the Grünerløkka and Gamle Oslo neighbourhoods (Oslo).

Documenting the street art of The London Police in Oslo

Documenting the street art of Logan Hicks, Shepard Fairey, Martin Whatson, Faile and Will Barras in Oslo

Documenting the street art of D-Face and Galo in Oslo

Documentation photography from Nepal – 2006 (on my Saatchi page).

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Photo documentation of #Occupy Oslo.

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Kathmandu in extreme silence – an art photography exhibition

ADAM DONALDSON POWELL:
book author and painter/art photographer

MY LATEST ART EXHIBITION: KATHMANDU IN EXTREME SILENCE

Adam Donaldson Powell’s latest art exhibition (photos taken in Nepal) featured color photographs printed on aquarelle paper. The exhibition took place at S9 Gallery, Sverdrupsgate 9 (Grünerløkka), Oslo, Norway, June 11 to June 17, 2011. Here is their WEBSITE

Adam Donaldson Powells fotokunst utstilling:
KATMANDU I EKSTREM STILLHET

utstillingsperiode: 11. juni – 17. juni, 2011.

Utstillingen besto av tolv farverike fotobilder i storformat, trykket på grovt akvarellpapir, og med eksklusive billedrammer. Katmandu er vanligvis full av mennesker, overalt og stort sett dagen rundt, også på hellige steder. Problemstillingen: hvordan kommuniser det meditative – til tross for store folkemengder? Powell har tatt imot utfordringen med konsentrasjon og tålmodighet. Resultatet? Her har kunstneren klart å fange stillhet og indre ro på en måte som gir en universell opplevelse av velvære og håp. Adam Donaldson Powell (født i Buffalo, USA) er profesjonell billedkunstner (siden 1995) og forfatter (siden 1987). Han har hatt mange billedkunst utstillinger over de årene, både alene og gruppe utstillinger, i Norge og i Sverige. Powells malerier og fotokunst arbeider finnes både i private og offentlige samlinger, inkludert f.eks Ullevål sykehus, Rikshospitalet, LLH, NAV, to ambassader i Oslo m.fl. Hans interesser for det flerkulturelle og det flerspråklige preger også hans litterære arbeider. Han har gitt ut 11 bøker, henholdsvis i USA, Norge og India, så vel som flere korte arbeider i skjønnlitterære blader i USA, Spania og Sør-Afrika.

SEE IMAGES FROM THE EXHIBITION “KATHMANDU IN EXTREME SILENCE” (“Katmandu i ekstrem stillhet”)

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VISIT MY NEW ART EXHIBITION BLOG: Oslo street photography.