Artist: Helen Werner Cox
Exhibition: Silent Screams
Media: Oil pastel, prints, carving, water based material, etc.
Gallery: Gastov West Gallery
Thursday March 24th Helen Werner Cox displayed her artwork at CSULB. Cox is graduating this spring and during her time here, has been very proactive about exhibiting her artwork. Cox is originally from Boston, Massachusetts. As one can observe from her exhibition one of her primary inspirations for her work is carousels, she is fascinated by how they look and their function. The merry-go-round at Griffith Park played a large role in this inspiration.
In her artwork, Cox uses mediums including oil pastels, prints, carvings, paint, and watercolors. Some of her pieces have taken incredibly long durations to completely but she enjoys the dedication and energy it requires. To bring her carousels to life, she actually road on the Griffith carousel for four straight hours. She also found a warehouse full of carousels and spent a stretch of time alone in there with them to bring them to life. For her monochromatic print pieces, Cox begins with a sketch and then redraws over it.
Cox creates her work with a strong through thread of intention behind it. She is fascinated by endless spiraling trap that society is stuck in. The circular concept of making mistakes, and then learning from them, is the epitome of her work. She uses carousels as a tool to convey this message. She feels they embody both anxiety and creativity. The faces of the horses are tired and dreary in this endless spiral of fun.
Cox’s artwork conveyed to me exactly the meaning she was intending. I too feel that same tediously creepy excitement when I am near to carousels. I love it when artist are able to find a factor or object that seems arbitrary but bring out the universality in the way it can make humankind feel.