Tag Archives: trees

Ash Dome: A Secret Tree Artwork in Wales Planted by David Nash in 1977 

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In 1977, sculptor David Nash cleared an area of land near his home in Wales where he trained a circle of 22 ash trees to grow in a vortex-like shape for an artwork titled Ash Dome. Almost 40 years later, the trees still grow today. The artist has long worked with wood and natural elements in his art practice, often incorporating live trees or even animals into pieces. The exact site of Ash Dome in the Snowdonia region of northwest Wales is a closely guarded secret, and film crews or photographers who are permitted to see it are reportedly taken on a circuitous route to guard its location. Nash shares in an interview with the International Sculpture Center:

When I first planted the ring of trees for Ash Dome, the Cold War was still a threat. There was serious economic gloom, very high unemployment in our country, and nuclear war was a real possibility. We were killing the planet, which we still are because of greed. In Britain, our governments were changing quickly, so we had very short-term political and economic policies. To make a gesture by planting something for the 21st century, which was what Ash Dome was about, was a long-term commitment, an act of faith. I did not know what I was letting myself in for.

Dr. James Fox recently visited the artwork for the BBC’s Forest, Field & Sky: Art out of Nature (YouTube) featuring six different land artists in Britain. You can see an excerpt regarding Ash Dome below, as well as footage of Nash working on the piece further down. (thnx, Elsie!)

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Suspended Tree Sculptures Connect an Artist to His Cuban Roots 

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“Espiritual conexion” (2012), paper, cable, fabric, acrylics and wood, 17.7 x 39.3 x 19.6 inch, all images via Jorge Mayet

Jorge Mayet's tree sculptures produced from paper, wire, fabric, and acrylic showcase the ways in which a tree’s roots often mimic the branches that sprout above ground. In these suspended works the underground systems are far more expansive than what appears above the earth, showing the viewer that what typically appears before us is only half of the real picture. Hanging from invisible wires, Mayet works are a conceptual connection to his own memories and roots growing up in Cuba, a visual metaphor for being uprooted from his home country.

The Cuban expatriate currently lives and works in Mallorca, Spain where he focuses his practice on allegorical landscapes like the ones seen here. You can see more of Mayet’s sculptures on his Facebook. (via Cross Connect Magazine)

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“Me desprendo de ti” (2009), paper, wire, fabric and acrylic, 66.9 x 23.6 x 23.6 inch

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Close up of Me desprendo de ti (2009), paper, wire, fabric and acrylic

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“Untitled” (2009), paper, wire, fabric and acrylic, 39.3 x 19.6 x 19.6 inch

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“Ochún” (2009), wood, paper, wire, fabric and acrylic, 39.3 x 19.6 x 19.6 inch

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“Sobre natural” (2008), wire, paper maché, textil and acrylics, 62.9 x 33.8 x 33.8 inch

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“A todos mis santos” (2008), paper, wire, acrylics and yarn, 45.2 x 27.5 x 23.6 inch

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“Corazón de Fuego” (2010), paper, cable, fabric, acrylics and resin, 55.1 x 33.4 x 33.4 inch

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“Tierra nueva” (2009), paper, wire, fabric and acrylic, 39.3 x 19.6 x 19.6 inch

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“Culto dialéctico de lo sagrado” (2010), paper, feathers, beads and acrylic, 15.3 x 53.1 x 26.3 inch

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Air Bonsai: Levitating Magnetic Bonsai Trees by Hoshinchu 

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Despite the visual beauty and life-giving nature of plants, there’s always been one main problem with our vegetative friends: plants can’t fly. A small company called Hoshinchu based out of Kyushu, Japan, recently set out to fix the problem that evolution forgot by inventing the Air Bonsai, a system for magnetically levitating small bonsai trees several inches above a small electrified pedestal. The system allows you to create your own miniature Avatar-like worlds with tiny trees or shrubs planted in balls of moss, but is also powerful enough to suspend special ceramic dishes of fragments of lava rock.

Air Bonsai is currently funding like crazy on Kickstarter and is availble in a number of configurations starting with a base DIY kit for $200 that requires you to use your own plants up to more elaborate designs that may only ship in Japan. (via Spoon & Tamago)

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Functional Shelves and Tables Built From Fallen South American Trees 

"Bilbao (Treet Shelf)," native wood, stainless steel, and glass, 150”x50”x30”

“Bilbao (Tree Shelf)”

Artist and designer Sebastian Errazuriz allows natural form to dictate his furniture design, building shelves and tables that conform to the tree structures that inspire his work. Highlighting the tree’s shape as focal point, Errazuriz keeps his designs simple, placing only thin panes of glass to add the functionality needed for shelves or tabletops. The trees he incorporates into his designs are sourced from forests in South America, readapting their fallen branches while keeping the integrity of trees’ original shape (like the root system seen in his Tree Table below).

Although Errazuriz’s designs tend to be minimal, he is also fond of adding a dash of the absurd. “It’s important to me that a project consist of just a little twist,” he said, “because I ultimately want people to see the obvious, the everyday differently.”

The Chilean artist received his Master’s in Fine Arts from New York University and is currently based in New York City. Errazuriz is represented by Cristina Grajales Gallery and Salon94. You can see more images of his work on his Facebook and Instagram. (via My Modern Met)

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“Bilbao (Tree Shelf)”

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Bilbao (Tree Shelf), detail

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Bilbao (Tree Shelf), detail

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Bilbao (Tree Shelf), detail

"Metamorphosis Shelf"

“Metamorphosis Shelf,” carved wood, 2010 , 56 3⁄4” x 127” x 14 1⁄2”, edition of 12

"Metamorphosis Shelf"

“Metamorphosis Shelf,” carved wood, 2010 , 56 3⁄4” x 127” x 14 1⁄2”, edition of 12

"The Tree Coffee Table"

“The Tree Coffee Table,” native wood, stainless steel and glass

"The Tree Coffee Table"

“The Tree Coffee Table,” native wood, stainless steel and glass

"The Tree Table"

“The Tree Table,” native wood, stainless steel, and glass, 150”x50”x30”

"The Tree Table"

“The Tree Table,” native wood, stainless steel, and glass, 150”x50”x30”

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Wood Blocks Carved and Painted into Glimmering Gemlike Objects by Victoria Wagner 

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Artist Victoria Wagner works with large pieces of reclaimed wood sliced into geometric forms and painted to resemble large gemstones. Titled Woodrocks, the cut facets of each piece are covered with delicate oil paint gradients that evoke mostly natural tones found in sunsets, water, or outdoor landscapes. The incongruous nature of wood and stone is something that fascinates Wagner. “There is something confusing to the senses in combinations that vacillate between interval and tone, allowing for optical engagement and a perceptual unpredictability,” she says. You can explore more of Wagner’s work on her website and on Instagram. (via Cross Connect, Supersonic)

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Serene Photographs of Isolated Landscapes and Lone Animals by Petros Koublis 

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Subtly influenced by Greek mythology, photographer Petros Koublis waits for scenes to unfold rather than push preconceived concepts onto the natural environments that surround him. This patience gives him access to moments of complete serenity on the outskirts of Athens, snapshots of wheat being pushed softly by the wind and singular animals caught by chance in the center of the frame.

“It’s all a matter of openness, letting everything flow through my soul undisturbed,” Koublis told Colossal about his process. “The olive groves, the pine forests, the sea, or even the peacefully grazing animals in the meadows—they’re all part of a very intimate experience with nature. They are part of us on an emotional level that goes beyond our present state as it reaches back to a forgotten memory of our origin.”

The Greek photographer does not attempt to transform his subjects, but allows them to alter his own approach to each image. Beginning his artistic practice originally as a painter, Koublis began to explore the medium of photography in 2000, studying in Athens, Greece. Koublis’s first photobook INLANDS was published early last year by Black Mountain Books. You can keep updated on his photography on his Facebook page here. (via Feature Shoot)

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