inspiration where you find it

Yesterday I had the chance to watch a great documentary, called 'Rivers and Tides'. It's about a Scottish sculptor named Andy Goldsworthy and the creativity exercises he does. He goes outside and makes art with natural objects, sometimes deliberately placing them where they will be destroyed when the tide comes in, or the wind comes up. He makes beautiful, if temporary pieces this way. Rent the movie and watch it.

Today is one of the first warm spring days here in Illinois, so I took a walk and tried it. This piece was made by gathering oak bark and twigs in a small area, and laying them out ala a log cabin. I made three pieces in all, the biggest around 12" square. It's a very freeing exercise to stimulate creativity--because I knew it probably wouldn't be there tomorrow, and because all the supplies were free, I just played. It would be very easy to enter a meditative state doing this. Try it.

The other thing I have been doing on my walks is taking pictures of the cold patches on the asphalt--for some reason I keep seeing one of my personal symbols, the kayak, on the road...haven't figured out what to do with them, but they're cool I think.


Ann Miller Titus said...

You need to come play with our part time neighbor, Laurel. They were here
last week and today, while walking around the yard. I found all sorts of interesting assemblages around the trunks of our trees. Wonderful.

Deborah said...

I love Goldworthy! That kayak symbol is such wonderful serendipidy! Of course... to me, it looks like a leaf. I'm in love with the leaf shape.

bj parady said...

I had never heard of Goldworthy until this movie, but now I'm a fan. They didn't show much of his permanent work, although I would like one of his stacked stone eggs for my yard...but his temporary pieces were truly sculptural and artistic, not like my pathetic little sketches.

As for the kayak shape, I'm a botanist by training, so I see the leaf shape, I just choose to call it a kayak at this point in time--in my work the shape is sometimes ambiguous and whether it is a kayak or a leaf is in the eye of the beholder. That's one of the beauties of symbols, right?

marion said...

Goldsworthy's work is wondrous, and seeing it in the 'flesh' is great. There are some permanent works on exhibition in the Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art and the Scottish National Museum in Edinburgh. If you google them, there might be pictures.

Kat said...

I love this nature art idea and it is as permanent as some modern art installations at galleries. What fun.

bj parady said...

exactly. It's like sketching--no worries about the final outcome, just a chance to capture something fleeting...of course, he and I do capture the pieces in photos, so there you go. Permanent temporariness.