Allen Cox, a native Oregonian, is a well-known abstract painter now residing in Pasa Robles, California, after a long stint in Knoxville, Tennessee. He holds an MFA in painting from the University of Oregon, where he studied with the highly regarded Pacific Northwest abstract painter Frank Okada. He also worked as a field archaeologist and scientific illustrator for 10+ years in Oregon, experiences which heavily impacted the themes found within his art. Cox has been showing his work nationally since 1982, and held his first international exhibition in Christchurch, New Zealand in 2003.
His abstract paintings call back to nature and his scientific career, with his art “find[ing] its basis in 20th century abstraction, yet at the same time includes pictorial elements not usually accepted in pure abstraction. I feel such contradictions add to the complexity of my densely constructed images.”
“These paintings also reflect my years of work as an archaeologist in Oregon. The multi-layered textural surfaces echo the stratified remnants of past events, for instance, while the abstracted reductive figures that often inhabit the work allow for open-ended interpretation in much the same way that prehistoric pictographs operate.”
His works have been featured in New American Paintings Artists of the West video segment, the book 100 Artists of the West Coast, design journals such as LUXE Pacific Northwest Summer 2013 Issue, and other visual media outlets. His collections can be found in both private and public collections nationally, and galleries representing Cox are located in Knoxville, Tennessee; Portland, Oregon; Laguna Beach, California; and Christchurch, New Zealand.