A studied look at Scottish artist Andy Goldsworthy, renowned for his intricate installations that fuse art with nature, including winding rock walls, icicle sculptures, and other ephemeral works in leaves, grass, and mud. Documentarian Thomas Riedelsheimer follows the soft-spoken and unpretentious Goldsworthy to reveal the ever-evolving nature of his creative process and his works, which ultimately become a part of their natural environs and are often destroyed as a result.
It’s both ironic and fitting that film is used to preserve some of Goldsworthy’s art. Compared to his melting works or decomposing compositions, film has a permanence in the same way that an oil painting can be appreciated for generations…if cared for. But film is also a temporal medium, especially compared to painting. If we didn’t spend time experiencing the individual frames forming into moving images, it would not be cinema. Rivers and Tides and its subject make the argument that it’s important to enjoy what is here and now before it’s taken away.