Anderson's work stems from an interest in the Western tradition of landscape representation. Exploring how landscape is represented as well as how its written about, it enquires into the evolving relations between actual, depicted, imagined, and idealised landscape. An ongoing series is composed from the landscape aspects of historical paintings. In each instance Anderson removes any human trace from the original source, so the resulting paintings are limited solely to the landscape background of each image. By repurposing the background in this way Anderson shifts the focus of the work to engage the viewer with what is withheld from vision, encouraging a reassessment of landscape as less a representation of a memorable scene in nature and more as an idea and as a mechanism for forgetting or erasing history.
Recent work takes as a starting point The Peregrine by J.A. Baker (published 1967) which follows two pairs of peregrine falcons across the Essex landscape over a single winter. Described by Robert Macfarlane as an 'elegy for a landscape' and a 'record in monomaniacal repetitiveness', Anderson's works visualise the landscape of the book, which, although only 50 miles from London, is made mysterious, elemental, wild and remote as anywhere in the world by its author who evokes an eerie emptiness. The landscape in Anderson's works is often under haze, emerging and receding, always shifting, and we call it forth by looking, bringing it into view.
In 2008 Anderson was awarded a five year residency at Acme Studios Fire Station in London and was Artist-in-Residence at Berloni Gallery in 2015. Past projects include Studies for Raeburn at Edinburgh Art Festival (2009), The Melancholy Thistle and Other Works at Aberdeen Art Gallery (2008), Dances for Landseer at Peacock Visual Arts (2007) and Two at Air Space Gallery (2007).