Exhibited behind the reception desk at 21c Museum Hotel are four sculptures by Judy Fox. The meticulously painted hand modeled terra cotta originals and the casting of those originals combines both idealized and generalized features of children-much in the way that heroic tales reflect a mixture of fact and fiction. The two boys the Power Figure 2004 series and the two girls from the earlier Satyrs Daughters 1999 series derive from art historical sources whose gestures from the past seem to suggest another meaning in the present. “Ayatollah”;, in the classic finger waving lecturer’s pose, is positioned flatly, as if drawn by a Persian miniaturist. The demon-red “Divine Warrior” retracts his fist like the fierce guardian figures posted at Chinese Buddhist tombs.
Within these bodies, each rendered meticulously after a particular model, the spirit of individuals press against the confines of the iconic roles they perform. It is up to viewers to make sense of these conflicts, and to reconcile them with their own responses to the figures that confront them, naked and exposed.
Similarly in the Satyr’s Daughters series the artists is interested in the paradox of nudity as a representation of both sexuality and innocence. She says she was drawn to depict the Satyr’s Daughters as young girls because they represent “that compelling time when you’re beginning to be conscious of your beauty but still don’t know what sex is.” This is the spirit captured in the Little Dancer by Edgar Degas, which in part provided the inspiration for the Satyr’s Daughters.