Adams, Norman (Edward Albert) 1927–2005
ADAMS, Norman (Edward Albert) 1927–2005
OBITUARY NOTICE—See index for CA sketch: Born February 9, 1927, in London, England; died March 9, 2005, in London, England. Artist, educator, illustrator, and author. Adams was renowned for his spiritual art depicting scenes from the Bible that were influenced by his own personal symbolism. He was attending the Harrow School of Art when World War II interrupted his studies. A conscientious objector, he was imprisoned for refusing to enlist and later assigned to work on a farm. With the war over, he returned to school, completing his art diploma at the Royal College of Art in 1951. Adams's interest in religious imagery was first inspired by a film he saw about the medieval painter Giotto. Scenes from the Old and New Testaments would thereafter populate his work, which mostly involved painting in oils but also other media, such as ceramics. His first important exhibit was held in 1952 at Gimpel Fils, followed by regular exhibits at the gallery Roland, Browse and Delbanco. Adams frequently painted works that related to one another in a series, such as his "Fourteen Stations of the Cross" series and his depiction of the "Seven Days of Creation." He was also an art teacher, and worked at St. Albans from 1952 until 1961, and then joined the Manchester College of Art and Design (now Manchester Polytechnic) in 1962. He left this position in 1970, but returned to teaching in 1973 as a tutor at Leeds University for three years. From 1981 until 1986 he was a professor of fine arts and department director at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and from 1986 until 1995 he was keeper of schools at the Royal Academy of Arts. From 1986 until his 1999 retirement, he was also professor of painting at the Royal Academy. Honored in 2002 with a seventy-fifth-birthday retrospective at the Royal Academy, Adams illustrated a number of publications, including George Sullivan's children's book Trees (1970), John Milner's A Decade of Painting, 1971–1981 (1981), and A. Adams's Angels of Soho (1988), Island Chapters (1991), and Life on Limestone (1994).
OBITUARIES AND OTHER SOURCES:
Independent (London, England), March 15, 2005, p. 36.
Times (London, England), March 18, 2005, p. 80.