Rivers and tides essay

Goldsworthy enclosure

Indeed, 'art as nourishment' is a tenet long embraced, but rarely is it personified so sincerely. As such, the director's most sublime moments come when he abandons the musical Prozac and allows the work to breathe in its natural space, such as the quiet, percolate sounds of a forest brook. For him, art is not a "thing" at all, but instead a process over time that helps one understand the forces that simultaneously compose and destroy our physical environments, personal and political histories, identities, and bodies. Combining symmetry and chaos, Goldsworthy's aesthetic is unique. Few artists are compelled to work in the freezing dawn, or at low tide, so that their materials might be appropriately malleable. Organic in tone and form, Goldsworthy's pieces align almost seamlessly with their surroundings; you might walk right past one without noticing. I started getting e-mails about it months ago. The sensation one gets from his art is akin to a meditative high. As viewers, we are removed from the pieces themselves — we do not get to see what Andy Goldsworthy or the person behind the motion camera see. It's a treat to hear this sylvan Brit define his work for us, changing our perception with each soft word. It's just one of Andy's myriad aphorisms, but there's no denying his genius. Released in to great critical acclaim, Rivers and Tides is both a documentary and collaboration between a filmmaker and his subject.

It made me giggle hysterically because it was like a game against Great Ocean: it would dare me to make another drawing before deciding that the slate had to be clean again! And it offers extraordinary beauty. In his hands, resting bodies become kinetic.

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All the while, his calculus is elusive: How does an artist achieve such defiant architecture? His palette of thorns, rock, and ice make oil paints look rather timid. But cling wrap actually is rather beautiful, as amazing a sign of human capacity as the dragonfly is of evolution.

Wet feathers wrapped around a stone before the incoming tide carrick

Popular Blog Posts. Goldsworthy's approach is meticulous, his crafting laborious, the reward uncertain. The documentary, directed, photographed and edited by Thomas Riedelsheimer , a German filmmaker, goes home with Goldsworthy to Penpont, Scotland, where we see him spending some time with his wife and kids. We see a long rope of linked leaves, bright green, uncoil as it floats downstream. His materials are organic such as the leaves or the thin vines woven through the foliage , his method is lengthy and exposed he is outside, in a public place, taking all day long to assemble something that will go away in hours such as the icicle rock sculpture , and his completed pieces are impermanent they begin to change form the minute he is done with them such as the spiral of sticks in a pile that the river washes away. Goldsworthy is an abstract sculptor who works with natural materials -- rocks, leaves, moss, ice. He is both professor and Buddha, learning as he teaches; moving with quiet grace; building grand spectacles and fragile, Zen moments; each of which serves as an insight into Man's relationship with nature. Designed in an elegant, black hardcover, the Rivers and Tides Collector's Edition opens like a small book to reveal richly photographed stills of Goldsworthy and his works, nestled between twin DVDs. Goldsworthy's art taps into some very universal sources of beauty -- fall leaves, the sun shining through ice; and the shapes he is obsessed with -- a line that winds back and forth like a river, a circle that, like the sun, appears to have been cut out of something -- all have something elemental about them. And it offers extraordinary beauty. Rivers give life to his creations, moving, changing, and destroying them. Juxtaposed against the artist's introspective craft is the happy chaos of his young brood, casting in sharp relief the two worlds of one man. He documents them with photographs. For a piece in Nova Scotia, he locates a fishing hole that is empty of water due to low tide and takes driftwood from the shore to construct a dome, its shape emulating the circulating eddies of the river.

And while much of his work is evanescent, we'll have no difficulty remembering the man whose astounding achievements continue to inspire us, if only on film. For a piece in Nova Scotia, he locates a fishing hole that is empty of water due to low tide and takes driftwood from the shore to construct a dome, its shape emulating the circulating eddies of the river.

Yet, calling the artwork "completed" at this stage is a misnomer, since Goldsworthy had specifically designed it so that high tide would lift the sculpture into the river, where currents would reshape its structure.

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It unfolds like a dream, in sleepy, disconnected passages, an ambient journey for both the viewer and its subject.

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Rivers and Tides: Studying a Documentary Film by Peter Sabath on Prezi