Saturday 7th August I took a trip up to Lancaster to meet up with Land Artists Richard Shilling.
Richard agreed to let me tag along with him on one of his "Art Days" which he does whenever he has spare time, mostly on Saturdays as he works full time during the week as an IT Manager.
The day started off with a visit to Standen Park in Lancaster to collect materials to aid Richard with his art. As we walked through the Park Richard explained that up until early 2002 when he moved up to Lancaster from Kent he had never dreamed of doing anything such as land art and there was no real inspiration from his surroundings to do so. This changed when he made Lancaster his home. With an unlimited supply of resources and inspiration from the land around him Richard soon became interested in art this was helped by reading books by Andy Goldsworthy - this is still a big influence today on how Richard took up land art.
When talking about decay in nature Richard said: "Decay is a big part of nature. It is just a point in the whole cycle of life. Decaying matter becomes nutrients for the next new growth, before its death eventually comes around for the next round in life.
If I was to offer up some symbolism for this sculpture then I would say that the mud canvas is the nutrient rich food for all the new life and what the oak tree feeds on to grow and flourish. The leaves fall and rot onto the woodland floor and all their stages are present across the slab. The whole cycle of life is here."
Talking to Richard gave me a real insight into how he is inspired by what is around him and spending a whole day talking and watching him produce the piece below.
I am hoping to spend some time with Richard again over the coming weeks to help produce Land Art with Rocks and Stone close to where he lives.