Anne Foxen portrait
Anne Foxen portrait

The ocean has always been an escape for me, where my vision can reach as far as the horizon and not encounter a trace of human existence, where I forget life on land and live entirely in the present.

I spent this past summer in Costa Rica examining the physical aesthetic qualities of the water, trying to decipher its “true” meaning, but I the more time I spent staring at the water, the more confused I became about this deceptively simple subject matter. On an immediate level, I struggled to depict this thing that moves so apparently constantly, yet in actuality dances as if it were alive, responding so dynamically to the slightest changes in wind, light, rocks, weather, temperature and time of day. On a more conceptual level, I struggled to depict the emotional contradiction that the ocean provides as simultaneously a place of inexplicable joy and of intense loneliness.

My installation includes on site sketches from Costa Rica, paintings from photographs, and paintings from memory, and my hope is that they work together to convey a sense of place. During my experimentations with the physical interaction of oil paint on varied surfaces, I explored the interplay between spontaneity and deliberateness, predetermined conditions and chance, and the role of abstraction on reality and representation. I hope that others, too, may find themselves lost in the materiality of my work in the same way that I find myself lost in the complexities and contradictions of the ocean.