Friday, August 04, 2006

Rivers and Tides

I am a huge fan of the documentary film. Recently Ian and I watched one called Rivers and Tides. When it came from Netflix, I read the information and thought that Ian had ordered something about geography. It was actually about Andy Goldsworthy, a British artist and photographer who lives in Scotland, with his wife and young children.

I had a hard time in the beginning of the film because I had a hard time with the nature of his work. My work is permanent. His is impermanent. My record is my work. His record is photography. Before sunrise, he will pour himself painstaking into the creation of a sculpture from ice which he knows will disappear with the heat of the day. It’s hard to dispell the feeling that he wastes his art and time when you see his work dissolve in the tide or melt in daylight.

With ice, stones, twigs and leaves, he assembles absolutely improbable structures. He builds them in tidal basins or in streams, knowing they are temporary, and he invests himself one hundred percent. The environment does to his work what he knew in advance would happen. And then he thinks of another way to do it all over again. I found myself totally engrossed with him and his work. I am his fan, one hundred percent.


Birdsong said...

The ice star is simply incredible. I have pondered those who make impermanent art, admiring their ability to live in the moment, especially since most of my art over my lifetime has been "useful".

Purple Fuzzy Mittens said...

I have seen several books of his work. I am sort of split on it. On the one hand his photos are all about nature and natural materials, which I love, but on the other hand it is staged. So is the art the assemblage or is it the photograph? Still, I have always found his work intriguing. Especially for the textures.