Rick Fox paints landscapes almost entirely plein air. Teaching and residing on the southern coast of Maine, he is surrounded by natural beauty; he visits the same spot over and over again, never tiring of the view. The light, time of day, and season create vastly different paintings from one to the other.
Each painting has a vivacity of application and color, even though the largest is 30×40.” They are gutsy, surprising, and sometimes chaotic. His paint, applied mostly using a palette knife, is laid down in thick, confident strokes with one streak bumping up against another and sometimes merging. Occasionally, small areas of the surface of a painting will appear to have been scraped away to reveal a wash of color instead of Fox’s characteristic pile of paint. It’s in these small moments that the viewer may wonder, if Fox is after more than just beauty—it’s a thoroughly considered labor.
Fox, a graduate of the Massachusetts College of Art (MFA) and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst (BFA), studied with George Nick, a longtime realist painter and mentor to many painters in New England.