Los (Loose) is composed of two solitary figures floating in the middle of Piesang River Lagoon at Plettenberg Bay. Constructed of multiple sticks, each manlike figure floats down the river, held aloft by wooden branches. They seem to be captured in a moment of reaching out to grasp for something. A few of the poles appear to be escaping from the men, drifting down the water on their own. To view the sculpture in its entirety, one needs to walk around the lagoon, removing your shoes to gradually spiral inwards into the lagoon. At each vantage point, one is rewarded with a different version of the twisting bodies.
Land Art has always had a direct, yet complex relationship with photography. Because many Land Art projects are temporary, the photographs serve as a primary reference source. Here, the photographs give another vantage point, highlighting the reflection of the figures. It is in the sculpture’s reflection that their full portrait emerges. These lonely, isolated figures float down the river in full view of the community around them. They are not alone, but connected by the multiple branches that hold them aloft.
2. Ongegronde grond op Woensdag se koerant (Ungrounded earth on Wednesday’s paper)
Angus Taylor painstakingly created art work that will quickly disintegrate. Ungrounded Earth on Wednesday’s Paper is a classic Land Artwork. A block made of compacted, exhumed earth sits on top of a pile of newspapers. The hole from whence the soil came waits nearby. The hole and the block seem to be a perfect fit, like two pieces of a puzzle lying next to each other. The tension between the positive and negative space animates the sculpture – the block, with its crisp corners, belongs in the cavity. Yet if one were to attempt to move it, the block of rich black soil would crumble.
The sculpture is placed in a nondescript empty veld, a few hundred meters from the N2 near Plettenberg Bay. It is a space you drive by. To stop at the exact position of the bloc and its corresponding hole is to come and visit Ungrounded. When leaving the sculpture, one is also aware that the artwork will be washed away; one will not be able to visit it again.
Ungrounded Earth on Wednesday’s Paper, with its humble material and modest size, is a monument to the moment.