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Woman at Work: Braeden Cox

Abstract Painter
Portland / Oregon / USA
Pronouns: She/Her

Dovetail Workwear woman at work braeden cox painting in her studio

When did you start painting?

My father is an abstract oil painter. Growing up I spent a lot of summers painting in his studio learning the basics, from mixing colors to what kind of tools make what kind of marks.

Did you complete any training? 

I went to school for art at the University of Oregon and received a BFA with a dual major in fine art and digital art. 

What does a day in your work life look like?

I do most of my work in the evenings. I have a full time 9-5 job so over the weekdays I'll try and get a few hours of work done in the evenings, and then work on the weekends. On weekends, my art practice starts in the afternoon and can go into the evening. There's a lot of time management involved, and learning how to dive right into a project. 

 

Braeden makes her mark on the Anna Taskpant (now on pre-order).

What do you want people to know about being a woman in your field?

There's a lot of great art being created by womxn today and throughout history and it's important to give that work a platform and space. Going back, I really love the work of Artemisia Gentileschi, a master Italian painter in the 1600's. I’m also a big fan of the abstractions of Joan Mitchell and the portraits of contemporary artist Amy Sherald.

Is there a particular piece of art that means something special to you? 

The painting The Abbey in the Oakwood by Caspar David Friedrich (below) introduced me to German Romanticism and that genre has continued to be important in my work.

Abbey in the Oakwood by Caspar David Friedrich Dovetail woman at work braeden cox

I first learned about this painting in an art history class at the UofO and I think about it a lot even today. I love the colors and the mood. There's a stillness and coolness that you can feel when you look at it. The twisting trees and ruins connect the present to the past and feel at once familiar and otherworldly. 

What is currently or perennially inspiring to you in your artwork?

The landscape of the Pacific Northwest is probably the biggest influence. The trees, mountains, water, changing skies and temperatures have all played a role in my work. I love how dynamic it is in the PNW and how quickly and dramatically it can change. Each season holds its own stories. This also plays into the idea of world-building, which really interests me. I like the idea of created places that I'd like to go to, or maybe have been to, but the memory of it is so far away that when I try and recapture it, it ends up being a totally new place but still feels familiar. 

Empire 1 Braeden Cox Woman at Work
Empire 1, the painting we photographed Braeden working on above. 

Any music that helps get you going in the studio?

Longtime favorites are José González and Andrew Bird. Some new favorites are Black Marble and Kikagaku Moyo.

See Braeden’s full portfolio at braedencox.com.

 


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