How can one live as full-time artist? It’s a question many of us have, as we graduate from art school and seek opportunities that enable us to continue to create art. Many of us end up working full-time jobs and after a few years, it’s daunting to venture beyond the safety net of steady income and benefits. It is true that most artists will not become spectacularly wealthy or famous. Luckily, many do find a way, through drive and determination, to have deeply fulfilling lives.
Rebecca Fox got hooked on welding after taking a class at San Francisco City College. She continued to take the same class over and over so that she could weld and have space to store her growing pile of metal. To further satisfy her craving for fire and metal, she worked as a teaching assistant at City College and as a welder in a metal fabrication shop. After several years at City College, Fox moved initially to Hunter’s Point Shipyard and then, two years ago, relocated to Islais Creek Studios. Nowadays she is a successful entrepreneur with a chandelier cleaning business. It is a self-owned business that allows ample time in her studio.
Many of Fox’s sculptures create interesting negative and positive spaces through the use of open circular shapes bisecting other circles or lines. Her recent pieces incorporate surface textures and scratches that, especially under lighting, add an interesting dimension.
Fox does not sketch out her designs. She begins intuitively by pulling out scrap metal from her large collection, then arranging them on the floor or holding them up together. Once she is satisfied with her composition, she welds her sculpture, taking pride in hiding the welds so the attachments are not obvious to the viewer. She enjoys creating pieces that give the illusion of metal floating in air. Once the pieces are put together, Fox decides how they will be finished – whether surfaces will be left plain, marked with patterns or patinaed. .
Fox has shown her works at SFMOMA Artists’ Gallery. Her work is in numerous public and private collections. She was a featured artist in the most recent ArtSpan Tour des Artistes fundraiser. You can currently see a great example of Rebecca Fox’s work at Mission Creek Park in San Francisco until early September where her “Heart” is on display (part of the SF General Hospital Heros and Hearts fundraiser). Her work is also featured in the Mendocino Coast Botanical Garden‘s Sculpture Gallery through November. And, Rebecca will be participating in the San Francisco Fall Open Studios. Her studio at Islais Creek Studios will be open the weekend of October 24-25th, with an Opening Reception on Friday, October 23rd from 6 – 9 pm.