Happy Earth Day!
One of my favorite 'environmental' artists is British born Andy Goldsworthy. Although that label doesn't at all encompass his most unique and beautiful work. He has spent four decades uplifting nature, the source of which his materials come from. Most installations are site specific using materials, leaves, branches, stones, water and snow that he finds where ever he travels to create a sculpture. He has worked in the US, Europe, Asia, even the North Pole! Most pieces are documented photographically and are not removed from the original site and are left to degrade from the natural action and forces of nature. He does bring some work into gallery and public spaces. Years ago at the Aspen Art Museum I saw on display some of his rock cairns and one work that really stood out, a rather large 'drawing' made from the sediment left behind from what must have been a huge melted icicle! Goldsworthy states: “For me looking, touching, material, place and form are all inseparable from the resulting work. It is difficult to say where one stops and another begins. Place is found by walking, direction determined by weather and season. I take the opportunity each day offers: if it is snowing, I work in snow, at leaf-fall it will be leaves; a blown over tree becomes a source of twigs and branches.Movement, change, light growth and decay are the lifeblood of nature, the energies that I try to tap through my work. I need the shock of touch, the resistance of place, materials and weather, the earth as my source. I want to get under the surface. When I work with a leaf, rock, stick, it is not just that material itself, it is an opening into the processes of life within and around it. When I leave it, these processes continue.
To see him at work, watch the film, Rivers and Tides: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBsBlGhkLxc
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