A sojourn at Vancouver Washington is worth it. There is a specific location, in Vancouver USA and not Canada, of the Land Bridge, over highway 14, that connects to the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site; more or less 30 minutes from Portland Oregon. The Land Bridge, with its fluid architectural augmentation, is part of artist/architect Maya Lin’s Confluence Project. It is sited near the Columbia River and within view of Mount Hood.
Maya Lin is best known as the designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, in the nation’s capital. She is also credited for her architectural work, visual/sculptural art, and landscape/environmental art. Her environmental art or land art is fascinating because of her unique abilities to combine human made or human manipulated forms within natural environments.
Maya Lin’s Wave Fields:
Land art, site-specific art, environmental/ecological art, or earth work is a form of landscape art that intricately links landforms and human artistic endeavor. Another contemporary environmental/land artist is Andy Goldsworthy, a British sculptural/visual artist and land artist. Goldsworthy tends to create his land art by only working with the materials at hand in the natural environment or site that he is visiting. His work is probably a progression from our own spontaneous, playful, random, and meaningful arrangements of found natural elements; that is a self-selected activity of arranging small stones or pieces of wood, as we take a long hike into the woods or mountains in our home regions.
Goldworthy makes extensive use of photography to capture his work after he has created it. He is also best known as the subject of the 2001 documentary, Rivers & Tides, directed by Thomas Riedelsheimer, which documented his creative process.
Andy Goldsworthy’s Stone Cairn:
There is some overlap and some distinctions between the environmental/land art of Lin & Goldsworthy. A most obvious consonance, they both seek an authentic coloration between natural contours and human artistic forms. And at least one departure between the two artists: Lin’s land art tends to be larger-scale, majestic, & more substantial while Goldsworthy’s land art is smaller scale, personal, & more ephemeral.