It’s Elemental: Line and Colour in Contemporary Art
October 24 - 29, 2020
JOHN RICHARD FOX, R.C.A. (1927-2008), Canadian
UNTITLED NO. 78, 1978
acrylic on canvas
signed and dated /78 on the reverse
62 ins x 87 ins; 157.5 cms x 221 cms
Proceeds to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cornwall, Ontario.
One of two lots by John Fox in this auction, this work comes from the artist’s middle period, a time in which he rejected representation—a genre in which he had been working for over 15 years—and leapt wholeheartedly into abstraction. From the early 1970s to 1985, abstraction allowed Fox to consider the physical and tactile qualities of painting without having to concern himself with the pursuit of subject matter. Influenced by Abstract Expressionists like Willem De Kooning and Mark Rothko, as well as Canadian abstractionists like Otto Rogers and Jean McEwen and second-generation Painter Eleven artists, Fox was “interested in the emotive brushstrokes and overtly expressive colour of international non-representational art.”
Fox was above all a master colourist, focused on the sensuous use of light, hue and tone. Time spent in Venice in the mid-1970s also influence his abstract compositions, and indeed it is hard not to see the rich Mediterranean light and faded frescoes reflected back at the viewer in these compositions.
Estate of the Artist
Big Brother Big Sisters of Cornwall, Ontario