Gilded Birds asked Radiohead lead-singer Thom Yorke about his ideal of beauty, captured in a photograph he took of a rock formation in Cornwall:
GB Do you think that nature is a higher form of beauty than man-made things?
TY They are too different to be compared. I reckon some of our ideas of beauty from the man-made world could be too self-referential and do us no favours. Too much time spent in cities you know? Surrounded by our own image, and our own intentions, our edifices to our brilliance. Having said that, the other thing I was going to suggest for a thing of beauty was a sports car.
When you are lost in a landscape mentally and physically your ‘human’ awareness can be wiped clean and you are simply part of your surroundings. A kind of meditation I would say, but your mind is not empty or clear, it is full of what is around you. The landscape is beautiful in the sense that it simply does not require you, it exists in its own right and it is not there wishing to be admired. I guess on the other hand the best art, human made, comes about the same way. It happens, it was like it was always meant to happen.
(Photo: ‘An old giant’s backbone buried in the rocks’ by Thom Yorke)