Age of the Image episode 3: James Fox tells the story of how, in the second half of the 20th century, artists, advertisers and film-makers used the power of images to sell us dreams. From the influence of Kodak on our family photos to psychologists persuading us what to buy, he explores how images seduced us with fantasies of a better life.
It’s a journey that takes us from the early days of the Marlboro Man to the radical feminist art of Judy Chicago and the reaction to male-dominated visual culture. Along the way, he celebrates Fellini’s mastery of cinematic fantasy, David Hockney’s subversive visions of male desire and Madonna’s groundbreaking music videos.
Age of the Image episode 3
James Fox is a British art historian and BAFTA nominated broadcaster. Fox specialises in 20th-century art and is currently Director of Studies in History of Art at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Fox is most notable for presenting documentaries on the history of art for BBC Four. He is also a frequent commentator on 20th-century and contemporary art in the British media.
Fox received a first class degree in History of Art from Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He then undertook an MPhil on British modernism, before spending a year as a Herchel Smith scholar at Harvard University. Returning to the University of Cambridge in 2006, Fox embarked on a PhD on history of art entitled Business Unusual: Art in Britain During the First World War, 1914–18, funded by the AHRC.
In 2009 he was appointed as a Research Fellow at Churchill College, Cambridge. In 2010, he spent Michaelmas term as a visiting scholar to Yale Center for British Art at Yale University. He subsequently joined Gonville and Caius College as a Research Fellow in 2011 before becoming Director of Studies in History of Art at Emmanuel College, Cambridge in 2021.
For four years, while still a student at Cambridge, Fox worked with the British art critic, Waldemar Januszczak, at his production company ZCZ films. In 2008 Fox and Januszczak co-curated the Statuephilia exhibition at the British Museum; this included work by Damien Hirst, Antony Gormley and Marc Quinn.