Steve Messam

Steve Messam is a Durham-based environmental artist known for his innovative and large-scale installations. He has created work all over the world, including in Austria, Denmark, and Wales ². Messam’s works seek to explore and uncover the layers of narrative within the rural environment, frequently drawing on existing uses of the land and reflecting an understanding of the geological, cultural, and agricultural practices already being used to shape the landscape ⁶. His work is characterized by its ephemeral nature and its ability to transform the everyday into something extraordinary.

Messam’s installations are site-specific, and he considers site to be absolutely key for all his pieces. He thinks about where it is, where it comes from, how people interact with location, sight lines, appropriate scale, relevance, how the light falls on it at different times of day, shape, form, color ². His installations act as visual reference points to help us understand the scale, shape, form, and character of the wider environment ².

Messam’s use of sustainable materials is crucial to his practice. Most of his work is temporary. He likes the temporary form. Part of that is a desire not to make unnecessary stuff in the first place. The future of all the pieces are designed from the beginning so that nothing will ever end up as landfill or elsewhere as storage ².

In 2021, Messam was awarded Visual Artist of the Year at the Newcastle Journal Culture Awards ². His most recent work, Encounters, is now on display at Bicester Village in Oxfordshire in an all-immersive exhibition of color, shape, and experimentation ². 

(1) Aesthetica Magazine – Transforming Landscapes: In Conversation with ….

(2) An Interview with Steve Messam – Fresh Air Sculpture.

(3) Steve Messam.

(4) steve messam | art and installation news and projects – designboom.

(5) Steve Messam Archives — Colossal.

(6) About — Steve Messam.

(7) Steve Messam’s large-scale installations complement the … – STIRworld.