I recently saw several paintings that illustrate the connection between landscape and art. This artist walked the woods exploring shadows and textures. The paintings highlight natural shapes and forms seen in nature and on golf courses.
This art isn’t duplication art done to imitate a golf photograph. It’s surreal art that accents the textures and colors seen in nature. If this artist painted a golf course, it would have no green colors.
I’ll confess to days walking through the MOMA looking at the Frank Gehry sketches and Rauschenberg collages, pondering the connection between landscape and art. An appreciation of art attached me to golf course work.
A golf course has manufactured forms that imitate nature. If done right, the shadows and swales duplicate those found on the shaggy coast of Scotland. Late summer afternoons accent these forms. I’ve worked many late afternoons on golf courses accompanied only by sunsets and shadows.
When I started building golf courses, I needed inspiration. A bulldozer shaper told me to look at the clouds-they have natural forms without square design elements. My first design/build contract required wind worn features. Needing inspiration, I spent a cold winter day in the dunes of Provincetown MA with my golden retriever. Ten hours later, I had a sketch book full of wind forms and a snoring dog.
I’m determined to explore the connection between art and landscape this year. In a few weeks, you’’ll find me on the dunes of Cape Cod looking for artistic inspiration.
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