Richard Long

A Line Made by Walking (1967)

About this artwork

This is the first work Long made by walking. Although it was made during the artist's first year at St. Martin's School of Art, it was only the start of a lifetime of making art by walking. Long made the piece simply by walking back and forth in a field to create an area of flattened grass which was visible only at certain angles. The line is a record of a journey, although short, and an expression of the energy taken to make it. This piece is typical of much of Long's works made outdoors, as it is an inherently ephemeral fragility and was not intended to last forever.

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  • title: A Line Made by Walking
  • accession number: AR00142
  • artist: Richard LongEnglish (born 1945)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • subject: Travel
  • medium: Gelatine silver print
  • date created: 1967
  • measurements: 82.50 x 112.50 cm
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
  • copyright: © Richard Long
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Richard Long

Richard Long

Long was born in Bristol, where he still lives. His work is about walking and the direct experience of nature. He trained from 1966-68 at St Martin's School of Art in London, where several of his contemporaries were busy questioning traditional forms of art. From the mid-1960s, while still a student, he began making walks and photographed the trace he had made (the flattened grass, stones laid at regular intervals) or would simply mark the course of the walk on a map. Later, he began laying rocks or twigs in straight lines or circles. By the late 1970s he was reconstructing these works in interior settings, though the walk remained the basis for collecting the natural material. Long won the Turner prize in 1989.