My recent landscape paintings of earth and land art are portraits of a dialectic; they instill the inherent contradictions between landscape painting and earth/land art.

This body of work addresses a range of dichotomies: nature and culture, outdoors and indoors, Smithson and Gussow, territorial intervention versus the unobtrusive gaze.

In the 60s and 70s (when these land/earth pieces were created), the art gallery was viewed by some to be corrupted by political and economic forces which amplified the art and nature duality.  Today it seems that some of the same issues that led to the reactionary evolution of earth and land art have now become a part of them. A visit to The Lightening Field can cost upwards of $250 per person.  Richard Long (A Line Made by Walking) now fills the gallery space with muddy handprints and large scale boulders. The series of Spiral Jetty paintings depicting its’ wax and wane embodies a sense of awe or longing not unlike that of the Hudson River School paintings.

These reflective paintings are oil on vellum over mirror.

Maggie Tobin

Earth/Land | 2011 | Paintings