Thursday, August 17, 2006
Last night I watched a documentary about Andy Goldsworthy. It was satisfyingly hypnotic to hear him talk about his meditative work. It's not really my cuppa tea, but I can't argue that some aren't moving and intense pieces. His stuff exists in a space between down to earth and accessible , almost egalitarian in its earnestness and simplicity, yet it wants to refer to the larger invisible forces of the universe which lay hidden behind the rigours of metaphysics and applied physics.
This all reminded me of the work I first made in art school when I first moved to Portland years ago. Being in the Pacific Northwest gave me an awareness of my surroundings that I had not previously been privy to: the geography of the land, the huge green trees, the size of the sky, a volcano nearby...Suddenly I was using drift wood and stones in pieces for foundation year classes. And I wasn't using them in hippie-reverance to the natural world, rather it was more out of a sense of discovery and a need for free material (due to my low income status as a poor art student). There was driftwood every where in Portland, it seemed. Along the banks of the Willamette in industrial North Portland, in the parks, in yards, even downtown had driftwood somewhere. (Portand had less of a glimmer shine to it in the early 90's..).