Andy Goldsworthy’s Ice and Snow Ephemeral Sculptures




Andy Goldsworthy’s Ice and Snow Ephemeral Sculptures

Although most of America (currently enduring one of the worst winter cold snaps in nearly two decades) would like to ignore this fact in for favor of bundled layers and heated blankets, sometimes even the dire cold, snow and ice can provide the tools and inspiration for those who brave it’s elements.  Famed land and installation artist Andy Goldsworth has often utilized ice, frost, snow and frozen earth to create his trademark land interventions. And rather than avoiding the elements, Goldsworthy is only able to create these delicate and precise sculptures by embracing the cold.

In Goldsworthy’s 2004 documentary, Rivers & Tides, several scenes document the difficulty in attempting to harness the cold’s elements. One scene shows the artist, braving the winter elements for hours at a time in finger-less gloves (so as to be able to properly feel and hold the materials) fusing together icicle chunks together with warm water, holding them in place while they freeze together into naturally-made though unnatural shapes. The smallest temperature changes, light, and even chance cause the ice sculpture to collapse, repeatedly, which is all part of Goldsworthy’s process. Says the artist, “Movement, change, light, growth and decay are the lifeblood of nature, the energies that  I try to tap through my work. I need the shock of touch, the resistance of place, materials and weather, the earth as my source. Nature is in a state of change and that change is the key to understanding. I want my art to be sensitive and alert to changes in material, season and weather. Each work grows, stays, decays. Process and decay are implicit. Transience in my work reflects what I find in nature.”

Goldsworthy’s process is only captured through the use of photographs, and the often detailed notes (below) which the artist uses to document the difficulties and triumphs of each individual piece.





23 thoughts on “Andy Goldsworthy’s Ice and Snow Ephemeral Sculptures

    1. Si cela n’est pas trop indiscret, peux-tu me rappeler les circonstances de, je te cite :

      “Mais je suis toujours transie de peur!
      Tant que rien ne s’améliore…
      Je ne sais pas comment je tiens?”


    2. please, essayez de ne pas employer le tu cela m’agresse. Pour vous répondre: je l’ai écris dans ‘”about”:il s’agit de mon mari, notre grave situation physique, la sienne, la mienne et d’autres ignobles choses qui s’y sont rapportées; C’est moche et je voudrais en parler; mais il n’y a personne qui peut réaliser ce qui se passe, tant que l’on ne l’a pas vécu soi-même!
      C’est vraiment trop délicat.

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Je vous prie de bien vouloir m’excuser pour le tutoiement. Je m’y perds quelque peu car certains (nes) souhaitent que l’on les tutoie et d’autres préfèrent le vouvoiement.

      Je viens de prendre connaissance de votre ‘About’ et je saisi mieux vos propos.

      Si je puis vous aider, n’hésitez pas. Je reste à votre disposition.


      Liked by 1 person

  1. Andy visited my sons school when they were much younger and had every pupil wandering the school field making sculptures from the leaves and twigs they found. Fifteen years later, the lads still remember this, and will often ‘make a Goldsworthy’ when on a country walk. A truly inspiring man and artist.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. The work on the title page was made by someone else.
    Mistake, This work was previously written by CECA GEORGIEVA.


Artists deserve respect. Even if it bothers you and you don't like their work; refrain from negative opinions, non-constructive remarks. Opt for an objective analysis of the work as well as a good understanding of the author's intentions..Thx

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