Monday, 24 June 2013

Transitory artwork

There are artists who work in a very transitory way.  Andy Goldsworthy is one.  He creates some magical pieces of work using natural materials, leaves for example, to make beautiful sculptures and images which may only last for a few hours, or even minutes.  They are there just long enough to be witnessed before being swept away downstream or blown with the next gust of wind. These art works have a fragility and a beauty which, I think, set them apart from creations hewn from wood or stone, because they only remain either in a photograph, or more ethereal still, in memory.

The beach seems to bring out the artist in more than the likes of Andy Goldsworthy!  I think we start when we are very young.  Who hasn't built a sandcastle during a summer holiday? The next tide washes them away but not before the hours of digging, slopping around with wet sand and seawater for the moat and trawling the beach for seaweed and shells for decoration must generate some of childhood's happiest times.
Heavy sea swells and high tides bring in driftwood which is great for a beach bonfire and barbecue during the long summer evenings, weather permitting of course, or it can stir the Robinson Crusoe amongst some.
I have also found little gems abandoned on the sand.  Tiny masterpieces made with bits and bobs from the beach and pretty things growing amongst the dunes.

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