Skip to main content
Ages 13+
Under 13
Stones laid out in a spiral shape.

Rewriting the Language of Nature: The Work of Andy Goldsworthy


Goldsworthy dares to reinvent natural symbols with elements he finds in situ, the result is a series of exquisite pieces.

Unfortunately, few of us pay attention to the ancient maxim that states that “by reading nature you will find all the answers you need”. Even fewer people dare edit this language and reinterpret it through humankind’s divine aspect: creativity. British artist Andy Goldsworthy (Cheshire, 1975) is a wonderful exception.

His work, which dallies between landscaping and site specific art, comprises a reinterpretation of symbols and patterns found in bio-rhetoric. Through each of his pieces, Goldsworthy distils threads of that impeccable discourse, coining short poems that honor the aesthetic soul of nature.

A clear precedent to his mastery over geometry and the art of proportions is that he studied applied mathematics. He only uses natural materials (leaves, rocks, sticks, shells) that he finds around the locations where he will build his installations, and, in most cases, his hands are his only tools.

Goldsworthy’s sculptural talent is complemented by his ability to photographically document his pieces which, like the cycles of nature, are inherently ephemeral. And it is precisely because of his photographs that his work can travel the world: they are nomadic symbols that call to be decoded by whoever is willing to see himself reflected in the mirror of life.

Related Articles