David Nash, who is member of the British Royal Academy of Fine Arts since 1999, has developed an international reputation over five decades for his practice entirely dedicated to exploring the properties of wood and trees, including sculptural forms shaped largely by chainsaws, only ever utilising wood which has become available naturally, whether through disease or storm fallen.
In addition to his object based work he is known for groundbreaking Land Art such as Wooden Boulder 1978-present, which charts the thirty-year journey of a rough-hewn oak boulder through the rivers around his home in North Wales towards the sea. Other iconic pieces are based at Caen-y-Coed, a wooded area owned by Nash and used as a site for planted works such as Ash Dome 1977-present. Nash first worked at Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) in 1981 when he used the estate as a laboratory for the development of his singular practice, undertaking a tree quarry from a diseased elm and making the planted work Three Stones for Three Trees 1981-82. In 2010 he returned for a career survey across all four galleries and in the open air, when he also made a new site specific work Seventy-one Steps.
The artist’s commission as part of the European Landart Network sees him undertake a major new planting of Himalayan birch trees adjacent to YSP’s magnificent lower lake. With striking paper white bark, the trees will stand in a 7x7 grid form, in contrast to a further charred work Black Mound, which will sit opposite.