Tony Plant’s art doesn’t avoid water damage, it invites it. For the past 20 years. Plant has created ephemeral works along England’s coast that only exist for the brief window between low and high tides. (Fortunately, they live on in photographs and videos, like the one below.)
Scrawled with a rake, the spirals are reminiscent of crop circles--but when you know there isn’t an alien behind their creation, they get a little less spooky. Plant has little to say about his works in public, so interpret them as you will. Do the drawings merely activate natural landscapes as art? Or perhaps there’s a more political message, the speed of the works decay foretelling the gradual disappearance of coastlines and beloved beaches as climate change makes the seas rise.
Plant is an inspiration not just to nature lovers, but to anyone who ever wanted to make a career of playing in the sand.