Pauline Foss’ paintings and drawings reflect her interest and concern about the natural world, and the humans and animals that co-exist (ideally). She is a staunch supporter of animal rights and outside of working as a professional artist and educator, she has worked as a dog trainer, a pedal steel guitar player, and is presently an equestrian.
Foss received a Master’s degree in Fine Arts from the Vermont College of Art, a Master’s degree in Art from Adams State College, and a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from the University of California, Davis. She has been the recipient of numerous fellowships and awards, including a Colorado Excellence in the Arts Fellowship in 2002. Her work has been exhibited widely both nationally and regionally. She presently lives with a dog and four cats in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
I am interested in the relationships between humans and nature and the hierarchy that has placed nature, animals, women, children, and people of color below the white Eurocentric male for hundreds of years.
In my paintings I unite, relate, mix and layer many life forms that are granted a less important position in the hierarchy. The images include, seeds, fruits, flowers, insects, animals, and women and are placed in a relationship of acceptance and peacefulness.
Interview by UCCS Fall 2018 Intern Hannah Shelton:
Hannah Shelton: Have you participated in previous faculty exhibitions at UCCS, and if so, how many?
Pauline Foss: I have taught at UCCS for 18 years, and since the faculty exhibition is every other year, then I think I have participated in 7 or 8 exhibitions. For several years the exhibition was in the previous gallery location in Centennial Hall. This will be the first faculty exhibition in the new Ent Center for the Arts space.
HS: Why do you think it is important to hold a faculty exhibition?
PF: Students want to know that their professors are working artists. It gives them credibility, integrity, and authority.
HS: What type of impact to you believe it has on campus?
PF: It demonstrates to the public and the campus that the missions of the UCCS Visual and Performing Arts Department is to instill and encourage conceptual creativity.
HS: The theme for this exhibition is time. How do you see this theme connecting to your work?
PF: Time is an illusion. Time is everything and nothing. The word time was coined to mark the passing of events. With regard to my work, each painting is an event. With regards to time, the content of any artwork is irrelevant. The viewer begins to view and then stops viewing.
HS: As an artist, what advice have you received that has proved to have a large impact on you or your work?
PF: I don’t remember any advice in particular. I’m sure I received advice and that it was assimilated or rejected by me. I have been mostly impacted by encouragement.
See the work of Pauline Foss and her fellow UCCS VAPA Faculty at TIME at GOCA Ent Center for the Arts (5225 N Nevada Ave) starting January 31st and running through May 12th.
Pauline Foss will give a free artist talk on March 14th along with exhibition artists Marina Eckler, Abbey Hepner, and Nikki Pike. Register HERE.