Andy Goldsworthy

1956 · United Kingdom

Artist biography

Andy Goldsworthy is a British sculptor and photographer, associated with the Environmental Art movement. Goldsworthy uses nature in all its forms as his primary source of inspiration, crafting sculptures and installations from organic elements such as rocks, branches, leaves and ice, often putting in focus the ephemerality of the natural world and documenting his constructions through photography.

Goldsworthy’s work is often considered as Minimalist in its aesthetic, repeating such patterns as lines, circles or spirals with the elements, thus instigating a whimsical atmosphere and elevating nature. Through his ephemeral Land Art sculptures, Goldsworthy emphases the passage of time, rejecting the concept of art as a product to be sold, and granting the viewers with the opportunity to reflect on the temporality of all things. The materials used by the artist are principally twigs and branches, thorns, pinecones, leaves, mud, ice, rocks and brightly coloured flowers; Goldsworthy often uses his whole body to create his sculptures but also employs tools for his permanent installations.

Goldsworthy was born on July 29, 1956 in Cheshire, United Kingdom, and worked as a farm labourer before studying at the Bradford College of Art, his early labourer work fostered an interest and adoration for the natural world. Some of his first artworks consisted of rock sculptures displayed at a beach close to his school. In 1985, he moved to Scotland and began to produce art inspired by the Land Art of the 1960s and 1970s, Goldsworthy currently lives in Penpont in the Scottish Lowlands.

Some of Goldsworthy’s most impressive works include Storm King Wall (1997-8), a permanent stone-wall installation in the Hudson Valley, New York, and Moonlit Path (2002), a temporary collaboration with nature where visitors were invited to walk along a chalk path, rendered luminescent as the moonlight shined upon it. Goldsworthy’s permanent sculptures are on display at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, the Storm King Art Center in Mountainville, New York, as well as Galerie Lelong in New York and Haines Gallery in San Francisco.

Andy Goldsworthy

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