Poet and Writer


Paloma Palomita Auschnitt

Wolfgang Paalen, Paloma Palomita, Manuscript 1957


Although Paalen is known chiefly as a visual artist, he also wrote poetry in French and German, which he shared with Valentine Penrose, Alice Rahon, André Breton and Paul Eluard. 1941 Breton reacted euphorically to Paalen´s poetical diary of his voyage to British Columbia in the summer of 1939: “I have read Paysage totémique, re-read, read in a loud voice, nothing is more adorable, indubitably genial”. Paysage totémique was partly published in his magazine DYN. He also wrote three theatre plays and various unpublished stories, such as Der Axolotl, Paloma Palomita; his play The Beam of the Balance, a tragic-comedy, reflects the unbroken power of Stalin´s totalitarian terror-regime, the release of the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 and the danger of the unbalanced scientific human mind in general. It was first read publicly in the house of Robert Motherwell in East Hampton in 1946. His play Elorn, A Ballad from Brittany reflects his lifelong passion with pre-Celtic matrilinear cultures.


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