In identifying Environmental Art, a crucial distinction lies between environmental artists who do not consider the damage to the environment their artwork may incur, and those who intend to cause no harm to nature. Indeed, their work might involve restoring the immediate landscape to a natural state.
Sustainable art might be an alternative term to environmental or green art, in recognition of the challenges that sustainability brings for contemporary art as a whole.
Another way of expressing environmental issues in art has been successfully done by the British artist Andy Goldsworthy. He has become known as an environmental artist with his work reflecting what nature does over a period of time. In one example of his work, he covered a boulder with damp; very brightly coloured autumn leaves in the midst of a landscape, which he then documented in the form of photographs. The work over the following days disintegrated as nature took its course and the leaves dried out and either fell or were blown away from the boulder by the wind.
I have often been asked, “What is environmental art?” and “Why are there so many different approaches to environmental art?” I am able provide answers to these questions by going into depth about my own specific approach to the subject and mention a few other artists who I am aware of that have also had the environment feature strongly in their work. I largely came into making this type of art by accident.