While most artists seek to have their work immortalized, 51-year-old Jim Denevan plans for his art to be temporary. His enormous land creations use natural materials like sand, earth and ice, effectually making the landscape itself become the means of his masterpieces. Due to their colossal scope, aerial photography is often employed to appreciate the full piece, while at the same time preserving the art before the tide or other natural elements wipes away his work.
Using rakes, sticks and other instruments, the California-based artist traces intricate, geometric patterns. Sometimes he works alone, and other times has made use of a large crew. When The Anthropologist commissioned a project on Lake Baikal in Siberia using ice and snow, the team successfully produced the largest work of art in the world.
Although Denevan considers the erasure of his work by weather and waves to be simply part of the process, its beauty is preserved on film for us to appreciate. Here’s a closer look at his awe-inspiring epic art.
What aspect of Denevan’s creations do you find most impressive? Should Denevan’s creations be preserved or allowed to disappear? Let us know your opinion in the comments.