land art

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Art

Garments of Grass and Flowers by Jeanne Simmons Fuse Bodies to the Landscape

May 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Grass Cocoon” (2018). All images © Jeanne Simmons, shared with permission

“When we spend a lot of time in a place, and if we are paying attention, a kind of intimacy develops,” says Jeanne Simmons. The artist, who’s based in the Pacific Northwest, grounds her practice in this sense of familiarity and ease with her surroundings. “We come to know the plants that grow there and the critters that roam there… We may even begin to feel that we ourselves have become part of that place, and it is this feeling that sustains and inspires me.”

After gathering natural materials like branches, wild vegetables, and bark, Simmons constructs garments that intertwine her own body and those of others with the landscape and obscure the distinction between the two. In one work, a full skirt made of Queen Anne’s Lace trails from the artist’s waist and blends with a meadow, while another piece braids dried vegetation into a model’s blond hair, developing a feet-long braid that appears to emerge from the ground. “Grass Cocoon” is similar, twisting locks into the material and swaddling a figure’s body in a sheath of green. “This is how I celebrate and deepen my connection with the natural world. I suppose I have discovered that the best way for me to become part of the landscape… is to wear it,” she shares. “It is also, at least in part, a lamentation for the catastrophic loss of that connection that we are witnessing in real-time.”

Simmons has several works in progress at the moment, including a kelp shroud and fennel gown, and is collaborating with director and producer Ward Serrill on a film about her practice. Keep up with those projects on her site and Instagram. (via Lustik)

 

“Grass Cocoon” (2018)

“Extensions” (2020)

“Lace Skirt” (2019)

 

 



Art

Anthropomorphic Interventions in the Landscape by Estelle Chrétien Playfully Examine Rural Life

April 26, 2022

Kate Mothes

“Land Operation” (2016-2020). All images © Estelle Chrétien, shared with permission

For artist Estelle Chrétien, the expansive lawns, fields, and wooded ravines around her home in Nancy, France, and other parts of Europe become sites of mischievous mixed-media interventions. Through a playful approach that she refers to as gauillant, akin to the feeling of playing in the mud or jumping in puddles, the works develop through chance encounters with the landscape and objects within it. Displayed in an “open-air” exhibition style, her pieces can be encountered by viewers in a similar way, with the potential to surprise and delight.

Chrétien is particularly interested in rural and natural places and examines the way we interact with those environments through an often humorous or ironic anthropomorphizing of her surroundings. Naturally occurring forms and textures inspire temporary installations like “Dessous” (“Underneath”) in which a tree with a double trunk, adorned with some oversized underpants, transforms into a pair of long legs jutting out of the ground. In “Opération Terrestre” (“Land Operation”) the manicured lawn of a stately home has received a wound in need of stitches.

The process of learning how to construct or manipulate different mediums is an important part of Chrétien’s approach. From crocheting industrial twine around a hay bale to repurposing a door into the shape of a giant key fob, she enjoys experimenting with unassuming materials in unexpected locations. She is currently preparing for a new open-air project in France this summer, and you can find more of her projects on her website and Instagram.

 

“Dessous” (2020)

“Land Operation” (2016-2020)

“Les pieds au sec” (2015-2020), in collaboration with Miguel Costa

“Ficelle Agricole Bleue” (2014)

“Dessous” (2020). Image by Miguel Costa

“Propriété” (2021)

“Colonne” (2020)

 

 



Art

Densely Arranged Stone Gradients Sweep Across the Sand in Jon Foreman's Extraordinary Land Art

April 15, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Jon Foreman, shared with permission

An expert in the hypnotic, Wales-based artist Jon Foreman continues his exquisite constructions that position stones and shells into perfectly arranged formations. His most recent pieces include a mesmerizing gradient circle, concentric swirl, and seaside surge that show an evolution from his earlier land art by adding even more density and precision to his already meticulous practice. Because he works in public spaces subject to the elements, Foreman’s compositions last only a short period, although he sells prints in his shop for those wanting to preserve their entrancing nature. You can follow his latest creations and travels on Instagram.

 

 

 



Art

Ephemeral Compositions Use Sand and Stone to Create Hypnotic Works on Land

November 19, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Jon Foreman, shared with permission

The wildly prolific Wales-based artist Jon Foreman has spent much of 2021 on a new batch of mesmerizing land pieces. Expanding on the swirling, organic shapes he’s known for, many of his recent works take on minimal, geometric formations in diagonal stripes or colorful, concentric circles. Foreman created a 2022 calendar featuring some of the compositions shown here—ordering instructions are on his Instagram—and you can find prints of his ephemeral pieces in his shop.

 

 

 

 

 



Art Photography

Nine Massive Waves of Deadwood Surge Across a Forest Floor Near Hamburg

June 8, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Jörg Gläscher, shared with permission

As the fear of a second wave of COVID-19 swept through Germany in the fall of 2020, photographer and artist Jörg Gläscher decided to channel his own worry into a project that felt similarly vast and domineering. “I was working (with the idea of) the pure power of nature, the all-destroying force, which brings one of the richest countries in the world to a completely still stand,” he tells Colossal. “A wave is a periodic oscillation or a unique disturbance the state of a system.”

Between November 2020 and March 2021, Gläscher spent his days in a secluded location near Hamburg, where he gathered deadwood and constructed nine massive crests—the largest of which spans four meters high and nine meters wide—that overwhelm the forest floor in undulating layers of branches and twigs. Each iteration, which he photographed and then promptly destroyed in order to reuse the materials, overwhelms the existing landscape with pools of the formerly thriving matter.

Gläscher’s installations are part of a larger diaristic project he began at the beginning of the pandemic. Since then, he published a few magazines to present the works that range from photography to sculpture in one place, which you purchase along with prints in his shop. Find more of his multi-media projects on his site and Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

 

 

 



Art

Precisely Arranged Stones Coil and Surge Across the Land in Jon Foreman's Mesmeric Works

December 2, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Jon Foreman, shared with permission

A scroll through Jon Foreman’s Instagram proves just how prolific the Wales-based artist has been this year—he’s collaborated with artist James Brunt (previously) on a few projects, too. From coils arranged in gradients to whirling patterns embedded in the sand, Foreman’s land art sprawls across beaches and grassy patches in an impressive number of locations. Each work is precise in composition, perfectly matching size, hue, and shape into hypnotic works that contrast the man-made construction with their organic backdrops.

Because the outdoor projects are ephemeral in nature, Foreman (previously) offers prints of most pieces in his shop.