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Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Memorial exhibit for Phillip Foxx opens Saturday afternoon at New Haven Public Library

New Haven Free Public Library Art Gallery
133 Elm St., New Haven
The Family Spirit of Art: Three Generations
Memorial Exhibition of artist Phillip Foxx (1915-2008) with son Jeff Foxx, daughter Patricia Foxx and granddaughter Cora Foxx
Through Oct. 7, 2009
Artist's reception: Sat., Sept. 12, 2:30—4:30 p.m.

Press release

The artistic spirit of the Foxx family spans three generations. The diversity of each family member's choice of medium, technique and content is unified by a passion for creativity, travel, and adventure.

Phillip Foxx had humble beginnings as an art department assistant during the depression, earning only $5 a week. His career blossomed in the nineteen fifties, enabling him to travel the world. He documented his explorations in vivid illustrations and watercolors, which stand as a wonderful collection of paintings and sketches done on site in Europe and Asia. He raised two children who studied and became artists, Patricia Foxx of Westchester County, NY and Jeffery Jay Foxx of Brooklyn, NY,. His grandchild Cora Gaw in San Francisco is a filmmaker.

As the 60's took hold, change was in the air and the Foxx family went through transformations of its own. The nuclear family dispersed and Philip moved to New York City, He took classes at the School of Visual Arts, started to sculpt in marble and his adventurous spirit prompted numerous trips including a cross continental journey via VW bus from Germany to Katmandu, oftentimes blazing trails through areas with no roads. He had a successful career in commercial art, becoming the principal artist for the jewelry ads of Lord and Taylor.

Patricia Foxx grew up in Westchester County, New York. She lived in France studying art at he American School in Paris, and returned to the US to join a group of artists in the Napanoch, NY where she began her career creating wall hangings and decorative pillows, which sold in stores including Bloomingdales and the Museum of Natural History. She went on to become a silk painter and clothing designer and later moved from NYC to Warwick, New York where she still resides, to raise her daughter Cora and teach. She continues her interest in watercolors, painting the beautiful countryside of the Hudson Valley. As an exhibiting artist, once a year she spends time with a group of women artists painting on Monhegan Island off the coast of Maine, to paint. These sojourns are reflected in he work.

Jeff Foxx's career as an ethnographic photographer is well documented in three books published by Harry N. Abrams, Inc. Sharing his dad's adventurous spirit, he traveled the world photographing for such clients as National Geographic, Scholastic, the UN, CARE, SAVE THE CHILDREN. His specialty is documenting contemporary Mayan culture in Mexico and Guatemala. Another focus of his work is powwow portraits of Native North Americans. Jeff's talent for candid, expressive depictions of his subjects makes his photos powerful and intensely captivating. His work has been exhibited internationally.

Cora Foxx, Pat Foxx's daughter, attended the noted School for Performing Arts in NYC and went on to the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, California where she studied film production graduating in 2005, resides and is a member of Heap a video collective. She created Pigeon Farm Media, a video production company, and is currently playing keyboard with the band Crystal Antlers, touring Europe and the United States.

Philip's life experiences are reflected in his artwork. He spent time at the Sivananda Yoga Center in Canada and years later did a larger-than-life bronze of their leader, Swami Sivananda, which is still in place in the center.

Philip married three times and spent the last part of his life with Betsy Gaw Foxx in New Haven, living in a condo overlooking the Quinnipiac River. He painted the bridges and the busy commercial activities of the river, never losing his fascination for the color, light and life passing by. He continued his travels with Betsy alongside in Europe and around the United States and wintered with family in Arizona.

It was Philip's lifelong wish to exhibit with his children. The Foxx family is honoring this wish and continuing his legacy. His artistic talent first manifested itself as drawings on paper bags in the back of his parents' grocery store. As humble as their situation was, his mother recognized and encouraged his artistic talent. His offspring can clearly identify where their artistic gifts come from and they are very grateful to Philip for fostering this exciting and gratifying aspect of their lives.

There will be an artists' reception on Saturday from 2:30—4:30 p.m.

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