Rachel Le Roux is a British-Filipina multidisciplinary artist based in the Philippines. After graduating with a BA Honours Degree in Interior and Spatial Design from Chelsea College of Art in England in 2008 and building her design career, she is transitioning into a full-time artist after closing her design business in 2020.
Working with pencil and oil on canvas, Rachel is known for unveiling the female form in motion or in simple solitude, unravelling in her own suspended moment in time. In the process of creating her, she navigates through layers that eventually unravel to become her own narrative where Rachel tells stories through faces and bodies that do not belong to her. Recently shifting into the expression of her own creative evolution through a self-portrait series, she embraces the magic that is giving her permission to dive in deeper into herself. As a silhouette sculpted behind the delicate fluidity of fabric, Rachel displays a tale of her own emergence from underneath the invisible cloak that created a protective layer for many years, a story of letting go and coming out from behind that heavy draped curtain.
Always inspired by time and how it is ceaseless, movement and stillness are always the fundamental components of her work and are the main factors in manifesting ideas and concepts. The duality and contrasts are about a shift in time; where each element involved manuevre around each other and dance in their own special way to create pieces that intertwine with everything that is the true nature of her practice.
Rachel’s work has been shown in group exhibits, art fairs and her paintings are found in private collections in San Francisco, Virginia, Australia, London, Singapore, Cape Town, Dubai and Manila.
When did your interest in art begin vs. when you began thinking of it as a career/life choice?
Art had been my great lost love—the one that I foolishly chose to abandon despite its promise of fulfillment. It was a love too deep for me to commit to so I walked away in favor of another path. Though I had neglected my love of art for years while pursuing a career in interior architecture, it was still faithfully there waiting. We may have reunited every now and then—only to part ways again when life got busy. The pandemic has changed the lives of many people and businesses, including myself. When I had to close my interior design business in the midst of this crisis, I chose to make art an integral part of my journey. It was a way for me to stay safe during this time and also keep my creative juices flowing but most importantly, reminded me of the great love I had. It was the best decision I made for myself and I haven’t looked back since.
What draws you to your particular subject matter?
At the start of my journey, I found a deep passion for artistic expression through pencil and oil on canvas. Capturing female beauty in both body and emotion, their silhouettes twist together with swirling fabric to create an elegant harmony—like two lovers dancing amidst a stillness that surrounds them. Layers come alive as each painting reveals its own story: faces unfamiliar yet speaking volumes from within me—allowing me to weave together narratives that belong solely to myself. Stemming from an intrinsic need within me, these depictions represent more than just marks on paper; they are windows into who I am at my very core
As I continue to explore my artistic journey, it has now shifted into a powerful self-portrait series. I'm giving myself permission to explore deeper into what lies beneath the surface, unveiling an untold story through self-portraits draped in fabric like a protective cloak—presenting a peek behind this metaphorically invisible barrier that has concealed me for so long. With each piece comes renewed courage; as if allowing others glimpses within encourages me to do the same with newfound clarity about who I am becoming.
What interest of yours (outside of art) ends up influencing your practice the most?
Music has been a captivating force in my life, stirring up emotions and motivating me to create. It's become an essential part of the painting process for me; like two partners dancing together—each connected through rhythm, melody, and emotion. Dance is also another inspiration—although I’m not a dancer myself, watching the performers flow with music as if they were one entity is so inspiring. In my head, I think I can move like them but in reality, they only move with as much grace possible on my canvases!
What is one piece of advice you wish you could give your younger self?
I would tell her not to weep over failures, but they are what strengthen her body. I would remind her not to cry over the voices that cloud and weaken her mind, because it’s her own voice that she needs to listen to. I would tell her not to falter in her footsteps, as her feet would carry her through the journeys that she doesn’t know exist. And I would whisper in her ear, to let her know that she just has to keep believing that things will happen if she just believes they will.
What would you say is your biggest goal for this year?
As I'm looking ahead to 2023, the changes that have come about in recent years fill me with new inspiration. What was gained—increased knowledge and a newfound confidence—will help guide my journey as I strive for more growth: adapting what has been learned so far, re-learning things from another angle and continuing to expand on past successes.