A Brick in the Wall
Growing up in Hollywood has informed Zox's art throughout his life. At Van Nuys High School, where he was a surfer and Captain of the Bee Football Team, Zox led a crew who painted hallway-spanning banners advertising school events. He began to realize how powerful imagery could be when his banner portrait of Fidel Castro was censored: The teacher painted a bag over Castro’s cabasa.
At San Diego State University, Zox designed his own creativity major that included art, photography, film and writing. Inspired, he painted a replica of a moose from his dictionary on the humanities building and was apprehended in the middle of writing his definition: "It's not only what one paints; where one paints might be more powerful." Zox met Andy Warhol for the first time at SDSU along with Viva, Nico and Paul Morrissey. Warhol gave Zox telling advice on being an artist—If you love it, do it. If you do it, it’s doable. That adage made art a possible life-path option.
Off the Wall
Experimental variations were in the air leading Zox into post-graduate work in Eastern philosophy at Berkeley and, later, surrealist and beat poetry as well as film at San Francisco State University. Studying with beat poet Robert Creeley expanded Zox’s creative range. He designed a deck of image cards to be formatted like sentences to create poetry. During this period, Zox was living at the Topanga Canyon home of The Door’s Jim Morrison taking care of his dog Sage and talking with Jim about poetry and the surrealist poets in Paris. Not long after those conversations, Jim moved to Paris, where he died shortly after.
Zox’s first job was painting murals for an LA record store. These projects led to cartoon drawing for Warner Bros. Records. Numerous projects for record companies were directed his way until the day arrived that he had been working toward—his first album cover assignment: The Boston Pop's Orchestra directed by Arthur Fiedler performing Tubby the Tuba and narrated by Julia Childs.
Beyond the Wall
Their mutual mania for hot and spicy cuisine drew Zox and Photographer Ed Caraeff together. It was only after many a teary meal that they started teaming-up to create album covers featuring large painted canvas backdrops and other unique solutions for such acts as Three Dog Night, The Bee Gees, Leon Russell, Steely Dan, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Poco; Nils Lofgren, The Guess Who, Sergio Mendez, The Waitresses, Hamilton, Joe Frank and Reynolds. They also designed the Bee Gee's tour jet on which Zox airbrushed the artwork.
Among a string of special projects in conjunction with LA Neon, Zox designed and painted an enamel on metal picture of the Los Angeles Griffith Park Observatory, which was installed just inside its entrance.
In 1987, Zox experienced a once-in-a-lifetime historical undertaking: painting his Weltfrieden guerilla World Peace mural on the Berlin Wall. The concept behind the piece was anti-art, created in hopes that it would be destroyed. Two years later, on the same date the mural was painted, ecstatic East Germans demolished the wall and streamed westward.
For decades, Zox has exhibited his paintings in galleries, receiving large mural commissions for private residences, restaurants and other businesses, such as the interior of The Beach Boys Recording Studio and writing art reviews. Oil on canvas remains the focus of his direction.
tel: 310 866 5452
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