‘Investigation, Imagination, Invention’

Main Art Gallery’s closing exhibition featured art by UTSA alumnus Sarah Fox


Sarah Fox. “Pony Boys,’ 2020. @SARAH FOX

Laura Thevaos, Staff Writer

Sept. 25 was the last day for the “Investigation, Imagination, Invention” art exhibit in the Main Art Gallery at UTSA. There were pieces from various artists: Jess T. Dugan (Chicago), Sarah Fox (San Antonio), Ellen Mueller (Minneapolis), Marivi Ortiz-Shoda (Chicago) and Cayla Skillin-Brauchle (Salem, Oregon). Some of the art pieces were intriguing, while others were more strange and confusing. Art can be meant to probe the mind and to cause a specific or multidimensional experience: as a commentary on the state of our culture or as a voice for the experiences of the artist.

Most of the art in the exhibit was done by Sarah Fox. She is an artist from San Antonio and she focuses on multi-media narratives through corporeal hybrid creatures. Some of these are disturbing while also appearing child-like, with a dream essence to them. These images portray human and animal figures, mainly of horses and children, all in different tones of blue. Some of these pictures appeared innocent and fairy-tale like, while others were more dark and difficult to interpret. Many of these images are children morphing into animals. 

The largest piece by Sarah Fox was “The Story of the Ponyboys,” which was completed in 2020. This tapestry was of various boy figures, with the heads of ponies or horses, in a lucid, blue landscape. These half-human figures are in a forest, surrounded by flowers and trees. There are different hybrids of these pony boys; one of them has the head of a pony, with the body of a boy, while there is an image of a boy and a sleeping horse. This piece seems the most intentionally chaotic and distorted of Fox’s work.

Another one of Fox’s pieces was titled “Brindled Boys.” It is another tapestry with blue, almost luminescent profiles of two boys’ heads which are connected to the heads of two horses. This connected image is surrounded by a backdrop of twigs and flowers. This image is both peaceful and calming. The boys’ eyes are closed, which reinforces the interpretation that these figures are between waking and dreaming; the circular shape of the heads adds to the sense of continuity and balance expressed by this work. In one sense the horses and the boys are just different representations of each other. 

Sarah Fox. “Brindled Boys,” 2020. @SARAH FOX

Childhood and adolescence are what affected the work of this artist. Fox, as well as the other artists represented in the exhibition, used their memories to shape their artwork. Everyone interprets art differently and while we may not always understand the artwork that we see, it can be important to evaluate because it can help us better understand our culture, other peoples’ experiences and to recognize our own perspectives.