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ADVANCING THE ARTS ACROSS MARYLAND

JOAN COX

JOAN COX

Artist Work

six months
2017
mixed media
Variable
twenty four months
2017
mixed media
variable
Our Bedroom Hymns
2013
acrylic on mylar
58" x 40"
Love is Everything They Said it Would Be
2013
Oil on Canvas
60" x 48"
Night Hunger, After Xenia Hausner
2012
Oil on Canvas
50" x 60"
My Baltimore
2017
acrylic on mylar
10 x 10 feet

Artist Information

County
Baltimore City
Phone
4104196285
Artistic Category

Visual Arts

Artist Statement

I place my work in the context of identity politics. As a feminist and a lesbian, I identify strongly with the concept of ‘other’ in my personal life and in my painting. I have a desire to see images of my sub-culture presented in museums and galleries. I use narrative, symbolism, fantasy, and autobiography to depict a taboo intimacy between women—acknowledging and emphasizing the female gaze. I draw on my own life to build narratives that are part fantasy and part memory as I investigate themes of otherness with celebratory optimism. I present myself in my work in the form of a self-portrait, whether I am literally depicting myself and my partner or other women as stand-ins for me. The body is the universal signifier of identity and the self-portrait is arguably the most intimate signifier of identity. By creating self-portraits, literally or metaphorically, I am sewing pieces of myself into each image with undeniable contemporaneity. I enter into dialogue with artists who have come before me by appropriating compositional elements of works by artists like Frida Kahlo, Egon Schiele, Henri Rousseau and Magritte.I place my work in the context of identity politics. As a feminist and a lesbian, I identify strongly with the concept of ‘other’ in my personal life and in my painting. I have a desire to see images of my sub-culture presented in museums and galleries. I use narrative, symbolism, fantasy, and autobiography to depict a taboo intimacy between women—acknowledging and emphasizing the female gaze. I draw on my own life to build narratives that are part fantasy and part memory as I investigate themes of otherness with celebratory optimism. I present myself in my work in the form of a self-portrait, whether I am literally depicting myself and my partner or other women as stand-ins for me. The body is the universal signifier of identity and the self-portrait is arguably the most intimate signifier of identity. By creating self-portraits, literally or metaphorically, I am sewing pieces of myself into each image with undeniable contemporaneity. I enter into dialogue with artists who have come before me by appropriating compositional elements of works by artists like Frida Kahlo, Egon Schiele, Henri Rousseau and Magritte.

Artist Bio

I use narrative, historical art references, fantastical elements of costumes and autobiography to depict taboo intimacies between women—acknowledging and emphasizing the female gaze. My work consists of large paintings, photographs and monotypes created over the past two years. I construct intimate moments in my photographs and create narrative portraits of lesbian relationships.

My work opens up a dialogue about the increasingly open presence of lesbian couples in contemporary society and the lack of their presence in the history of Western art. I seek to overturn the male gaze on women's bodies and allow the women portrayed to "own" the visual space on the canvas.

I received my MFA from Massachusetts College of Art and Design with a thesis exhibition in September, 2013. my solo exhibit, "Taboo" was held at The Silver Gallery at Goucher College from Oct - Dec 2013 with a published catalog.

I received a BFA in Painting from Towson University in Baltimore, Maryland in 1991.

Artist Video: