Ian Hamilton Finlay

Finlay uses poetry, philosophy, history, gardening, and landscape design. His concrete/stone work have taken forms into cards, books, prints, inscribed stone and wood sculptures. At the beginning of Finlay’s artistic adventure he never was bothered by colour, shape, scale, texture and composition. However Finlay was a poet and student of classical philosophy.

At the beginning of Finlay’s artist cover he never was bothered by colour, shape, scale, texture, composition. However Finlay was a poet and student of classical philosophy, he has always noticed the power of language and art to shape the different perceptions of the world.

His words are mostly famous for the garden called ‘Little Sparta’ in windswept Pentland Hills, In Southern Scotland. In the ‘Little’Sparta’ garden at the end of every path or bend there will be a mixture of plaques, benches, obelisks, planters, bridges and tree-column bases all that have his words on them.

The ‘Little Sparta’ is a metaphor for Western Culture. Finlay also uses the theme of culture and Nature as he believed that ‘Nature only becomes intelligible to us when ordered through the cultural constructs that necessarily belie Nature’s essential, untamed naturalness.

Later on he started using graphic design within his work. The theme of Nature and Culture are used by gardens and looking at the activity within the garden, he looked at the sea and the power and beauty, Finlay also looks at Classicism, aethetics, philosophy and politics within Western Culture.

I like Finlay’s work in some aspects, I like the simplicity of it and the use of nature and gardens within his work. I like his garden that he made it’s beautiful and has that cultural background to it. However I also don’t like his work as it just seems as a mixture of everything and doesn’t really capture my eye, I don’t understand the words that he uses in his work and if I saw them in an art gallery I probably would keep walking by as I wouldn’t mind missing them.

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