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  • Untitled
  • Red-blue slate circle

Richard Long was born in 1945 in Bristol, England, in 1945. He studied at the University of the West of England’s College of Art and then at St Martin’s School of Art and Design, London. He became closely associated with the emergence of Land Art. Long made his international reputation during the 1970s with sculptures made as the result of walks through rural and remote areas in Britain, or as far afield as the plains of Canada, Mongolia and Bolivia. Guided by a great respect for nature and by the formal structure of basic shapes, Long never makes significant alterations to the landscapes he passes through. Instead, he marks the ground or adjusts the natural features of a place by up-ending stones or by making simple traces. He usually works in the landscape but sometimes he uses natural materials in the gallery. Different modes of presentation, sometimes combined, were used to bring his experience of nature back into the museum or gallery. From 1981, he also alluded to the terms of painting by applying mud in a very liquid state by hand to a wall in similar configurations, establishing a dialogue between the primal gesture of the hand-print and the formal elegance of its display. Nearly forty years on, his work continues the dialectic between working freely and ephemerally wherever in the wide world, and bringing it back into the public domain of art spaces and books in the form of sculptures of raw materials such as stones, mud and water and photographic and text works. The consistent employment of archetypal shapes, mostly circle, line, cross and spiral, is immediately noticeable in the artist’s body of work. Long always stressed that the meaning of his work lays in the visibility of his actions rather than in the representation of a particular landscape. Bringing together the unevenly shaped raw materials in the geometric structure, Long’s works illustrate a recurrent theme: the relationship between man and nature. Richard Long’s works are on permanent display in Britain at the Tate and Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery as well as museums in America, Switzerland and Australia.