Earthworks: Five Artists Sculpt The Landscape

Matthew Moore

Matthew Moore

Lita Albuquerque

Lita Albuquerque

Andy Goldsworthy

Andy Goldsworthy

Our planet is a truly magical work of art; complex, multifaceted and textural.  Perhaps this is why Andy Warhol, a name that is unlikely to be associated with this topic, once said, “Land really is the best art.”  Viewed in this simplistic yet profound light, land, or Earth, serves almost as found object in the implementation of Earthworks.  In other instances land becomes the canvas, or the sculptural negative space for installation, or even a foundation and medium to explore sociocultural patterns.

Lita Albuquerque has used the earth and its materials for decades to create ephemeral and spiritually infused work. Her incorporation of performance, photography and installation creates multiple dimensions and lenses to experience our world, our relationship to earth and the stars, as well as their rhythms and cycles.  The images featured here of her project Stellar Axis document an artistic expedition into Antarctica, which was the first and largest ephemeral work created on the continent. The installation of ninety-nine spheres across the icy landscape mimics the pattern of the ninety-nine Antarctic stars above- visually linking Earth to the cosmos.

James Turrell

Bridget's Bardo (Ganzfeld Piece)

Bridget's Bardo (Ganzfeld Piece)


James Turrell is one of the most important artists in the world dealing in light and space. Born in Los Angeles in 1943, Turrell studied mathematics, psychology and sensory synesthesia as well as art at university. He flies around the desert in little planes and has devoted the best part his working life to turning a volcano into a piece of land art. “The spaces you encounter during flight can be amazing: meeting the dawn or watching the Aurora Borealis,” he says and describes an experience of taking off once at dawn and seeing the sunlight trapped between ground fog below and cloud cover above. These words paint a perfect portrait of his work.

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