Jennifer (Jaye) Fox received the preponderance of her training from several academic ateliers, including those of Andy Reiss in Brooklyn, and many others associated with the Art Students League in New York City, where she received Board of Control and Merit Scholarships. Her work is also informed by her studies in the Growth and Structure of Cities at Bryn Mawr College. In 2004, she received the prestigious Phyllis Mason grant, she has been a finalist in the American Society of Portrait Artists (ASOPA) annual competition, and has exhibited at and received awards from the Salmagundi Club and the Pen and Brush Club in New York City. Her work has recently been featured in publications including Failbetter.com and the Manhattan Users Guide. To see more of Jaye Fox's work, you can visit her website and her Etsy Shop. She co-directs studio21south, an art gallery in North Adams, Mass.
Are there particular artists who have influenced your depiction of light in your Nocturnes Series?
Good question, but no. This was entirely experiential, from growing up in New York City, where the night sky was always defined by streetlamps. They turn the sky a particular color that is very hard to place, which has always fascinated me. As an artist, I wanted to take on the challenge of figuring out how to represent this in paint. It's difficult, because it's really more of a retinal effect than an actual local color, so the painted representation of that light is really an abstraction (in a way, all painting is an abstraction, but this, even more so).
I am rather taken with your series of paintings of the Kosciusko Bridge, in Brooklyn, which are painted entirely from the vantage point of one street corner. What initially drew you to that particular location?
My significant other/fiance and I thought we'd like to take on an industrial theme, and paint on site, outdoors. At the time, I had access to an apartment in the residential area that was quite close by an industrial zone, which I'd always found generally interesting, but didn't know well. Our idea was to drive around this area of North Brooklyn and pick a few sites that interested us, and paint in different places from time to time. We found one street corner where we both found something that interested us. That was April 2008. We were there through the summer. We returned in 2009, and again in 2010. Sometimes, the more you get to know a subject, the more interesting it becomes. We both kept finding new themes and vantage points we wanted to explore...all on that one street corner!
We only finally got off the corner when we were both preparing for a show and realized that it was going to look seriously monomaniacal if we didn't hurry back and paint something else. That was a busy week.
Has showing the work of other artists, as co-director of a gallery, influenced the choices you make in your painting work?
This is another wildly interesting question I'd never thought about. I'm not consciously aware that it influences the choices I make, but selecting work and curating a show of other artists generates a constant internal dialogue with the artwork. I'm always thinking about what other artworks are about, their strengths and weaknesses, how they relate to other works, how people respond to them, and how my response changes over time. I'm sure that this ongoing chatter in my head must be solidifying my own ideas about picture-making, but I'm not, at present, conscious of how it's turning up in my work.