Assignment 4: Preparation/Research

I’ve finished my draft of the essay for Assignment 4, having chosen to focus on Andy Goldsworthy’s ephemeral sculptures and his use of/relationship with photography. I wanted to take a bit of time to reflect on the research process and my approach to the essay.

I chose to write about Goldsworthy’s sculptures mostly because I enjoy looking at and reading more about his work. But I also felt that his use of photography was extensive enough to warrant further exploration of his relationship with photography as a medium without running out of words in my essay.

I did take my normal approach initially by looking for articles on-line about Andy Goldsworthy, specifically his ephemeral sculptures. Two articles I read are worth mentioning her but didn’t expand much on photography, so I didn’t refer to them in my essay.

Online articles:

The Guardian Online: Natural Talent, by Tim Adams, March 2007.

The Guardian article offered much more rounded a perspective on Andy Goldsworthy as a person and as an Artist. Whilst the Architectural Digest focused on an upcoming book of the artists work;  Andy Goldsworthy: Ephemeral Works, 2004–2014

Architectural Digest: Andy Goldsworthy: Natural Man by Lise Funderburg, November 2015 

Naturally the book Ephemeral Works would’ve been particularly useful for an essay with a focus on his ephemeral sculptures. However after a visit to my local Library I returned with two books by the Artist; Enclosure & Hand To Earth. After reading through these books, I felt I had enough references and ideas to work from without needing to buy the book (sorry!)


Enclosure by Andy Goldsworthy, published by Thames & Hudson Ltd 2007. Hand To Earth by Andy Goldsworthy, published by Thames & Hudson 2006.

Enclosure by Andy Goldsworthy, published by Thames & Hudson Ltd 2007. Hand To Earth by Andy Goldsworthy, published by Thames & Hudson 2006.








My essay does focus fairly heavily on photography, touching only lightly on the themes of time and place. I felt that as part four was about photography it was best to make that the main emphasis rather than giving lots of time to explore the sculptures themselves. I hope this was the right approach, I guess I’ll find out if it wasn’t once I’ve received feedback.

I was also aware when approaching writing the essay that my tutor had advised me to included or show some understanding gained from reading around the subject. I tried to provide this in the form of some references to thoughts of Susan Sontag from her book On Photography. Again part of me worries that my link from Sontag’s thoughts to Goldsworthy’s photographs is a bit tenuous, but I genuinely tried to see if there was a link there and gave my own reflection upon this.

I’ve kept my exploration in the essay brief, so as to meet the 1,000 word limit. But I found during the research that there was much more that could’ve been expanded on or added to the essay. I hope that my writing is succinct without being sparse – again I find this difficult to tell by my own judgement. I really will have to wait till my tutor’s response to find out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *