Mesmerizing sand art emerges at San Francisco’s Ocean Beach

Visitors to San Francisco’s Ocean Beach might catch the latest work from artist Jim Denevan — if they’re quick.

The Santa Cruz artist, who is known for his large-scale land compositions, was creating his latest piece Sunday, but it might not be there Monday. Like many of his works, this one is fleeting, created and then destroyed within hours or days.

Pictures of the latest sand artwork show what appear to be conical mounds of sand arranged in a perfect circle, starting with smaller mounds and then getting bigger and bigger moving outward. This work is similar to one he created for an event earlier this year called Desert X AlUla in Saudi Arabia, which featured art installations by 15 artists.

According to the press release, Denevan creates these land compositions without any type of measuring tools. He has been creating works at Ocean Beach since the ’90s, before he became a serious artist.

Denevan is the Guinness World Record holder for the largest single artwork called the “Apollonian Gasket,” a sand sculpture created in 2009 in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert that spans a total circumference of more than nine miles.

His works have been documented and exhibited by a number of institutions including the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, MoMA PS1 in Queens, the Vancouver International Sculpture Biennale and the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Mass. He is also the founder of Outstanding in the Field, an open-air, roving culinary series and is the subject of a 2020 documentary called “Man in the Field: The Life and Art of Jim Denevan.”

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