Wood sculpture tunnel

Sculptures by Spencer Byles, photos by Lionel Bouffier

What is more romantic that venturing out into nature and spending the whole day simply creating art? For Spencer Byles, an English artist living in France, he is literally living this dream thanks to his "A Year in a French Forest" sculptural series.

Spencer Byles"This project represents my experiences throughout a twelve month period exploring the back regions of three unmanaged local forests [and] making on-site sculptures," Byles writes on his website.

Each sculpture is hand-constructed using natural materials and found objects that were foraged from forests near his home outside of Cannes — specifically La Colle Sur Loup, Villeneuve Loubet and Mougins, France.

Like many other examples of Earth art, these whimsical sculptures are inherently ephemeral — the brevity of their existence is part of the artistic process. Once completed, one of Byles' sculptures might stand for six months to a year before it is inevitably consumed by the forces of nature and vanishes completely.

Swirling wood sculpture

Although sometimes locals will happen upon the sculptures while taking strolls in the forest, Byles explains that around "50 percent of [his] work is probably never discovered, which is okay by [him]."

There are no formal exhibitions that showcase Byles' work in-person, so the only way to document his obscure work is through photography. Check out the video below to learn more about Byles, and continue further down to see more of his work.

Wood sculpture wreath
Wood sculpture bear
Wood sculpture target
spiny wooden sculpture
Pretty wooden sculptures
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Catie Leary is a photo editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.

Catie Leary ( @catieleary ) writes about science, travel, animals and the arts.

A year in the woods yields surreal sculptures
What's more romantic that venturing out into nature and creating art all day long?