Zippy leads us on an art tour:


Stickwork is the title of Dougherty’s 2010 book about his outdoor stick sculpture. Fascinating stuff.

From his website:

Born in Oklahoma in 1945, Dougherty was raised in North Carolina. He earned a B.A. in English from the University of North Carolina in 1967 and an M.A. in Hospital and Health Administration from the University of Iowa in 1969. Later, he returned to the University of North Carolina to study art history and sculpture.

Combining his carpentry skills with his love of nature, Patrick began to learn more about primitive techniques of building and to experiment with tree saplings as construction material. In 1982 his first work, Maple Body Wrap, was included in the North Carolina Biennial Artists’ Exhibition, sponsored by the North Carolina Museum of Art. In the following year, he had his first one-person show entitled, Waitin’ It Out in Maple at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

His work quickly evolved from single pieces on conventional pedestals to monumental scale environmental works, which required saplings by the truckloads. Over the last thirty years, he has built over 250 of these works, and become internationally acclaimed. His sculpture has been seen worldwide — from Scotland to Japan to Brussels, and all over the United States.

Some of his works resemble creatures:


Call of the Wild (2002), Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA  (photo: Duncan Price)

Others look like human constructions, including dwellings:


River Vessels (2010), Waco Arts Festival, Waco, TX  (photo: Mark Randolph)


Summer Palace (2009), Morris Arboretum, Philadelphia, PA  (photo: Rob Cardillo)

There’s a lot of inventive outdoor sculpture, using natural materials, around, exhibited under several labels. For example, the monumental earthwork, Spiral Jetty, by Robert Smithson:


From Wikipedia:

Spiral Jetty is an earthwork sculpture constructed in April 1970 that is considered to be the central work of American sculptor Robert Smithson [January 2, 1938 – July 20, 1973]. Smithson documented the construction of the sculpture in a 32-minute color film also titled Spiral Jetty.

Built on the northeastern shore of the Great Salt Lake near Rozel Point in Utah entirely of mud, salt crystals, basalt rocks and water, Spiral Jetty forms a 1,500-foot-long (460 m), 15-foot-wide (4.6 m) counterclockwise coil jutting from the shore of the lake. The water level of the lake varies with precipitation in the mountains surrounding the area, revealing the jetty in times of drought and submerging it during times of normal precipitation.

(Note the salt deposits.)

Then, right here on the Stanford campus (at the Cantor Art Center), an intriguing piece of Andy Goldsworthy land art (his term), Stone River (2001), using natural stone:


From Wikipedia:

Andy Goldsworthy, OBE (born 26 July 1956) is a British sculptor, photographer and environmentalist producing site-specific sculpture and land art situated in natural and urban settings. He lives and works in Scotland.

Finally, a project in ecological art, or environmental art, by Aviva Rahmani: her Blue Rocks project (2002):


(photograph by Aviva Rahmani)

On Rahmani, from Wikipedia:

Ecological artist Aviva Rahmani’s public and ecological art projects have involved collaborative interdisciplinary community teams with scientists, planners, environmentalists and other artists. Her projects range from complete landscape restorations to museum venues that reference painting, sound and photography.

Aviva Rahmani’s Blue Rocks project (2002) drew attention to a degraded estuary on Vinalhaven Island, Maine. The USDA then contributed over $500 000 to restore twenty-six acres of wetlands in 2002.

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