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from "ELEMENTAL SCULPTURE" Todor Todorov, Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
Lucien den Arend
After many years of working with metal on a large scale, Lucien den
Arend rediscovered two ot the natural elements as a source of
inspiration and working material. These are earth and water. Beginning
to work in this direction, professionally he has long been outdoors,
having left the studio and the scale of the exterior is no problem for
him. All that is needed is a last step towards a merger with nature,
which he makes, though he continues to work in an urban environment.
His land art works, some of which also include water as an element in the overall conception, are influenced by the peculiarities of the Dutch landscape - a flat country, in which: "God created Water, but the Dutch created Earth", as the Dutch like to say. His works are a kind of art-proiection of these relationships between the locals and nature (reference: Appendix 1, p. 131 - Island X-ing).
Even from an airplane we can distinguish The forms of nature from a manmade form without thinking - this is the difference between the straight line, typical of human intervention, and the curved line into which nature is shaped as structure, at least in the scale we inhabit. At a crystal and cellular level, things look completely different. If we look through a microscope or look at and compare photos of crystals and living organisms we will see that inanimate nature contains many straight lines which, in turn, distinguish it from living nature at the cellular level, with its form of curves and planes.
Lucien den Arend, like Michael Heizer, is among the authors who impose a "human" geometrical structure when making sculpture in the natural environment. To compare - we have the differentiated contextual approach of Isamu Noguchi seen earlier, which mainly takes into account the characteristics of the concrete place and the purpose of the project, and less a preliminary attitude or preference. This raises a new Question in sculpture: should an artist be looking only inside himself or should he rise to the realities of the specific context? It is our firm conviction that these two possible types of reaction within the scope of one work are not mutually exclusive and often lead to considerable success.