Reception Tonight

Green, 15x30, Orange, 9x12, Red, 30x24, Russell Steven Powell oil on canvas
Green, 15x30, Orange, 9x12, Red, 30x24, Russell Steven Powell oil on canvas

Green, 15×30, Orange, 9×12, Red, 30×24, oil on canvas

RECEPTION TONIGHT, Friday, April 13, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. for “Streaming Hatfield,” more than 30 new oil and acrylic paintings, Anchor House of Artists, 518 Pleasant St., Northampton, Mass.

A new video, “Walk Water Wind,” will play in the lobby. Refreshments provided. Hope you can come! It’s a great space with a museum, and lots of other artwork and paintings.

Follow this link for directions: Where to find us


Here is my statement opening the exhibit:

I AM A LIAR at times, saying “sunny side up” and “over easy” when I really mean scrambled. Sometimes I think the cheeriness is nothing more than an inverted howl.

On one level my paintings are journalistic: a chronological record of direction and progress, personal and cultural. I also feel a responsibility to address the major issues of my times, including our revolution in communications technology, and the ongoing threat of climate change and degradation of the planet.

The two are intertwined; my smartphone, the Internet, and social media offer tantalizing new frontiers, but they require enormous energy and resources, subvert the natural world, and diminish the senses. How do I reconcile them?

Words and causes can be a dodge, a way to justify my stoicism. Painting spares me such ruses, giving voice to my fears and optimism, breaking down my defenses. Rationality is a framework, not an absolute, obscuring as much as it brings to light.

All of us at some time have experienced great beauty and suffered unspeakable loss. I take refuge in my daily walks, admitting my own harsh truths as I observe and absorb

the lone, pathetic honeybee littering the snow;

bare colt’s foot at field’s edge, spinning brief gold from icy roots;

wild apple in bloom and its wasted, wind-blown petals;

the wet-nosed deer and its flea-ridden carcass;

hieroglyphic trails of dumb beetles etched daily in the sand;

shagbark hickory resisting sinuous, suffocating vines;

a heron’s perfect wings arched above the muddy river.

My paintings reflect nature’s paradoxes and contrasts, heavy in texture and brushstroke, emitting their own fragrance, sometimes irrational or inscrutable. Nothing is as simple as it first appears, nothing is easily resolved, especially through the eyes of a human interlocutor, or his audience.

Russell Steven Powell, April 2018

2 Replies to “Reception Tonight”

  1. Ah, Russell, your writing is as wondrous as your painting! Sorry I can’t join you tonight.I am there in spirit.

    1. What a lovely comment! Thank you for the kind words, and I will think of you tonight, comrade! There’s always video night on the 27th, if you are around. The paintings will still be up.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *