There’s been a lot said about art and how fleeting or permanent it can be. Some artists never get the recognition they deserve while they’re still alive, some only get a glimpse and others get to enjoy the fame and fortune that might come with being a popular artists of their generation. Art itself also has different timelines. Some art is considered genius at the time of it’s creation only to be forgotten with the years to come, other pieces of art are often found old and dusty only to be exhibited in art galleries and be displayed in all their glory for ages.
Then there’s performance art, that only exists while the performance is happening and never again. But land art is a thing of it’s own. It’s unique, it’s hard to put into any sort of box, it just is and you can either enjoy it while it lasts or not.
Jon Foreman is an land artist who lives in Pembrokeshire, Wales. He discovered art when he was in college and immediately fell in love with it. The idea of creating art out of natural materials and just getting lost in the process is very appealing to him. Jon predominantly works with stones on beaches. Lucky for him, there where he lives in has plenty of beached with lots of rocks on them so he has no problem finding materials.
When it comes to inspiration – Jon says he rarely has a full picture in his head. He just goes to the beach and prepares to spend about 4 hours there creating a piece of art. Sometimes he will go there with a vague idea of what he wants to create, other times he will have no ideas at all and will just start doing something and see where it takes him. Often times even when he has an idea he’s still surprised with the end result.
Jon just loves the process. To him, creating these beautiful rock sculptures on the beach is a meditative process, it keeps him sane and calm and grounded. He says it’s been really good for his mental health. There’s a freedom in just going for something and enjoying the process and being spontaneous without needing to follow a plan or having any rules.
Jon also doesn’t mind the fact that his land art isn’t going to be there forever. He knows that the next day the tide will wash away his sculptures and arrangements. But that doesn’t bother him. It’s just like nature is giving him a new fresh canvas. Jon says that the fact that his art is temporary and has a very short-lived life makes it that much more special to him.
Occasionally he will get some negative feedback from people who say that his art might be disrupting the life of creatures who live on the beach but Jon doesn’t let it bother him. He says it’s ridiculous to think that gathering rocks on the beach into a specific formation can disrupt nature, especially when you consider the fact that the tide will wash it away soon. To Jon, land art is the purest form of art, everything about it is natural, both the canvas and the materials and nature itself gets to interfere with it.