Olafur Eliasson's art contains the nature of inquiries founded on thorough research in a scientific tradition. This allows certain parallels with conceptual art, in that Eliasson, in his art, seeks to form a balance between art's aesthetic appeal and the beautiful, natural romanticism of scientific inquiry. In a manner similar to artists such as Walter de Maria and Carl Andre, Eliasson is particularly concerned with the interaction between the art work and the onlooker.
Although the majority of his works are rooted in the portrayal of nature or its elements, in this case, portraits of rocks; nature as a subject is not his ultimate objective. Instead, Eliasson is primarily concerned with the individual's sensory perception. In order to explore this, Eliasson often includes us, or surrounds us quite literally with his work (as witnessed by his monumental installation at Tate Modern's Turbine Hall, or more subtly with the expanse of images he presents us with in The Blue Series). In a certain sense, Eliasson uses the portrayal of nature not as stimulation for inner-contemplation, but rather as incentive for systematic studies. Furthermore, his Eliasson's art functions on a temporal level as well, in that we come to understand his work through our intense scrutiny of it. Therefore, scale or expanse of works becomes crucial as it forces viewers to move about and "take-in" the entirety of the work, forcing the viewer to become part of the work. As Eliasson has said, "My work is you, the onlooker."