Ruth Fox, nude body like fragmented, abstract landscape
”Some time ago now, I noticed that when you look down at the body in front of you, it can appear to be very much like a fragmented, abstract landscape made up of hills, terrains, valleys, lines and curves. I began to perceive not only how the body replicates Nature in this way, but also just how little attention we (and the worlds of visual image) have paid to this very experiential and primal view of the body. I find it funny, and a little crazy too, that we place so much belief and significance in reflections of the body (in a mirror or a photograph of ourselves) as opposed to looking at the real thing! Not only is it a very personal viewpoint, but I think the primal view perspective of the body has the potential to reconnect us with our physical selves, and in ways that don’t destroy or stroke the ego unlike an image does.”
Activism / Environment
”I am actively involved in climate change marches and activism. Through my entirely abstract paintings and sound art, I aim to translate our relationship with various habitats and environments, and their impact upon the body. These include the the mind, the womb, the Natural world and all its elements, the digital world and the man-made world. I perceive that how we treat these relationships have already come to test some of our most primal human instincts; fear, survival, power and protection.”
Ruth’s work explores how we see and experience the body. Starting with her primal view concept she plays with the tipping point between knowledge and experience: between recognising the body in its human form when we look down at it, and entirely shedding that recognition, to show the fragmented body as a remarkable, abstract and landscape-like entity, and as a unique entity we inhabit, yet one which is alien and foreign to us. Using oil pastel and acrylic paint on paper and canvas, as well as tactile fabrics stitched with embroidery threads, she records the body’s lines, shapes and contours with a wide palette of colours. The works invite the idea that through these primal views, the “lost” sense of connection we have with the body can be found, acknowledged and celebrated, in terms of both our collective species and our individual identities.
Ruth also explores the body’s experiences through entirely abstract paintings, installation and sound works.
In Nov 2018, Ruth was invited to give a TEDx talk at Royal Holloway University, which was published on the TEDx YouTube channel: ‘How to Rebel Against Body Image Idealism.’
Ruth grew up in Hertfordshire in the UK before moving to London for 15 years, now living in Margate, Kent and working from her studio at home. Her 6 year meditation practice also influences her ideas about how we experience and treat the body. She is also interested in brainwave states of alpha, theta and delta as a means to calming mind and body, and the body in ‘flow state’ (ref. Steven Kotler, Flow Research Collective).