Time, always an element in the work of Andy Goldsworthy - both as a medium and as a metaphor - is celebrated in this book. Text contributions are compiled from Goldsworthy's own diaries of visits to five locations in North America and Europe.
The photographic records are sublime, and vital to his ephemerality, whether in Montreal, Digne, Nova Scotia, Holland, New Mexico or Cornell. The accompanying text, a continuing dialogue for Goldsworthy, explores still further his familiar conceits, though diary excerpts give evidence of the toil behind the beauty, and bring out the unpredictability of his work, from which he unflaggingly draws inspiration, whether on a beach, in a river, in a wood, or in a gallery. One is left with an intuitively organic sense of continuity, of which this absorbing and lavish volume is itself a record of regenerative temporality: "What I have made so far gives me a strong sense of the work yet to come." --David Vincent
What to say about such an amazing work? For the first few times I
mainly absorbed the photos of his works, with only reading the
little captions and it wiped me off my feet. After a few rounds
of these I decided to read all of the writing in the book that
accompany the works he made and it totally blew me away. This
book has definitely altered something deep inside about the way
Ilook at nature, change, the seasons and time in general.
Time, as the title of the book suggests is the main topic of the
book and Andy Goldsworthy's art in general or at least his
approach and intention towards it. The body of work presented in
numerous photos and with corresponding writing in the form of a
journal covers the whole range Goldsworthy's work. For example
works made from stone, wood, leaves, snow, ice,...
As a result it gives an excellent overview and introduction of
his work and via the numerous writings a very deep, personal and
detailed insight into how he approaches different places, how he
reacts to change and works with the weather. The writing is on
par with his work. Very clear, direct, honest and poetic.
His insight into the concepts of time and change and seasons and
nature is truly breath taking. The introduction he wrote for the
book is a wonderful example illustrating this. Part of it can be
read by using the "Look inside the book" feature of Amazon.
Spending time with this book really cracks ones mind wide open
about time, change, nature and seasons and how to look at it and
And honestly I don't know what's more amazing. These amazing
and unbelievable pieces of art. Or the incredibly crisp and poetic
writing, deepening so much ones understanding of the works and
give insight into Goldsworthys view and approach and thoughts. Or
simply that out there somewhere a human being is walking this
earth with such an amazing understanding of time and nature and
able to transform this into amazing art an writing.
If the idea of Goldsworthys work is for him to work with time and
change and nature and to further his awareness of these concepts
and make sense of them in the most beautiful way then that is
exactly what this book excells marvelously at for the reader.
Goldsworthy's many mediums are covered in "Time," which features sumptuous photography by Terry Friedman. We see perfectly constructed stone cairns--some pyramidal, some only half done and all the more startling for what isn't there as for what is. We see ruddy sandstone arches four times the height of a man. But Goldsworthy's most consistently inviting work is done not in stone, but in the ephemera nature leaves for him everywhere he looks. Goldsworthy's work is sometimes so fleeting as to question the very nature of whether it constitutes art when it lasts only minutes or hours. The frost shadows, for instance, are simply photographs of the still-iced patches of grass over which Goldsworthy stood in the early morning, then stepped aside so that a photograph could be taken. Of course these are gone within minutes as the sun warms the now-exposed grass. Is this art? Merely the fact that you question it shows your engagement with the work--Goldsworthy fosters a kind of subtle dialogue between reader and artist and the dialogue is consistently engaging. Another heat-destroyed piece is the thinnest imaginable sheet of ice, laid against a moss-covered rock, and Goldsworthy's handprint visible on it. As it thawed, it buckled and disappeared and we see its disappearance in the photographs. It's lovely, it's witty and it is, improbably art.
Other things disappear, too, but not from the sun's warmth. There is a "stick hole" Goldsworthy built early one spring which he and Friedman came back to photograph throughout the summer until the final photograph shows it utterly covered with the lacy ferns which grew up around it. There are the perfectly circular or perfectly ovoid leaf rafts Goldsworthy stitches together, then sends on their way down a meandering stream, having their path photographed before they disappear. There are the piled of rocks he constructs leading into the ocean so that the tides swallow them up--each stage meticulously recorded on film.
Perhaps the most transformative art in the book is the mud wall displayed on the cover. Goldsworthy applied mud to walls and floor in such a way that when the mud cracked and dried, it showed the meandering, snakelike pattern he'd put into it. It has become something entirely different solely through the passage of time. This book is filled with surprises and delights, and will have you utterly absorbed, charmed, and astonished. I can't recommend it highly enough.