Since I was going to spend majority of time creating land art I wasn't sure what kind of landscape and materials I would encounter. I took little time to get to know the landscape, the shapes, colors; to respond to what surrounds me and as I would call it "say hello to the land".
Walking along the banks of the Yampa river I noticed pieces of coal laying about embedded into the river bed, among the stones and sand. It was the first material that drew my attention, stark contrast of black against the light colored sand. Coal is somewhat controversial topic in the community, there's also a coal plant near by. The pieces I created dealt with symbolic meaning of coal, how it relates to the issues of energy and the Earth.
There was an abundance of other materials as well: soil, sand, cottonwood scattered everywhere, bleached by sun resembling the bones, stones from the river bed, grasses. Some of the cottonwood I borrowed from beaver dams that were taken apart by withdrawing river.
Besides the materials, the place immensely influenced my work. The sheer expanse of the river valley, its openess and non-urban environment allowed me to go larger in my work, as they would say go bigger or go home. I saw evolution in my work, in size, scope and the themes as well. For a while I've been looking to into incorporating fiber into my work which I did. It's something I will keep exploring.
I processed the landscape in drawings as well. I was trying to get its pulse, the feel of the land and see how I respond on paperl.
This residency had quite an impact on my work. Colorado landscape, its colors and the quality of light left me in awe. I hope to have an opportunity to go back West.