Today we’d like to introduce you to Renée Fox.
Renée, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve made art since I can remember. I’m also a very positive person, and my optimism allowed me to believe I could follow a career as an artist, probably one of the most difficult professional directions to take. While studying for my BFA, I also worked closely with some amazing mentors, both in and outside of school. Partway through the four year curriculum, I relocated from Washington DC to Los Angeles and made LA my home. There, I established a mural business, which became my main source of income after graduation to present.
My current practice includes studio art, private and public mural commissions. To date, I’ve also run my own exhibition space, directed commercial galleries, founded and organized a City-wide art studio tour, and organized private events from my studio to promote my work and that of other artists.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Life as a freelance artist is incredibly rewarding and never easy, but I can’t imagine doing anything else. It is what I love and where I excel. It takes a lifetime to really master painting and drawing. Now that I’m 46 I sometimes feel I’m only beginning to make my mature work. Not to give undue credit to the challenges I’ve faced, but they have taught me a lot about dedication and what I need and really want. Lost relationships with people who envied the time I devoted to my art practice felt like minor bumps in the road compared to financial instability and self-doubt. Mustering the courage to take risks in my work is probably the most difficult challenge I face, but a necessary step to growth.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I just completed a new series of large scale landscape paintings, and because of the COVID-19 pandemic, my exhibition, initially scheduled to open Tuesday March 24, was cancelled. These paintings began as a commentary on the surreal reality of our quickly changing environment marked by the rapid loss of various species of large animals. Baby Polar Bears, a Mountain Lion and other animals feature as subjects in these paintings like un-natural mythical creatures. Now that everyday life has turned completely surreal, they feel even more storybook to me. While looking for ways to promote these new works I am also writing a proposal for a large permanent public mural installation and maintaining a daily studio practice all while doing what I can to stay healthy. These days I am grateful to be busy, to ride my bicycle outside on beautiful spring days in LA with clear smog-free skies, and for my loved ones.
Panic Studio L.A., Avesha Michael
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