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[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]mandy rubino
Wed, 18 Nov 1998 10:39:06 -0500
I'm working on developing a lesson around manipulation of the
landscape. I have decided to compare contemporary "environmental"
artists - such as Andy Goldsworthy, Christo, Robert Smithson, and Jim
Reinders - with historical examples of land art, like Mt. Rushmore, the
Great Wall of China, and the Burial Mounds in Southern Ohio. I plan to
introduce ideas of collaboration, as many of these works are large scale
and an individual could not create them alone; appropriation, because
some artists, such as Jim Reinders, choose to replicate historical
landmarks in an alternate, unusual medium; and permanence /
impermanence, since these artworks are outdoors in the elements and
often times incorporate natural surroundings, they cannot last forever.
With this last idea, I hope to tie in John Berger's book, Ways of
Seeing. He writes on the ways photography has changed how we view works
of art. Since much of this 'land art' is temporary and exists only on
photographs or video, I would like to explore the role of the photos.
Do the photographs change the validity of the original artwork? Is the
photo in itself art since it is the only record of the original?
I have formulated a series of questions to engage the students in
critical thinking and analysis. I would like them to explore the
validity of land art, the means of manipulating the land, and how they
can learn about such art if it only exists (physically) for a short