Insects, worms and chainsaws are just a few of the threats that trees have to face. Trees try to protect themselves against dangers, but many times I would like to offer them protection. Inspired by the old fashioned armor, I created a shield for three trees. The tree garments are made of many single wood pieces, as an armor is constructed of many small steel pieces. They have a fiery red inside, to scare of any agression. Their shapes are inspired by these trees and their environment, adding a language to their natural being.
The ancient philosopher Herakleitos noticed that one can never step in the same river twice. In principle everything is in flux (panta rhei). This metaphor for everything living inspired me to draw a lively water-pattern with dead wood on the forest floor. The steepness of the hill ensures a waterstream during a rain shower. But water is transparant is hardly visible when running down the hill. The flow of locally sourced wooden branches suddenly allows ones attention to dive deeply in an otherwise less noticed corner of the park.
Three trees are partly overgrown with pieces of crockery. These pieces seem to grow naturally on the sculpture, just like barnacles or mushrooms, sometimes tumbling over each other, sometimes unfolding as a flower. The sculpture is inspired by the undeniable presence of human culture in nature. Human culture feeds on nature, uses and sometimes misuses it. At best nature and humans live in symbiosis. When one damages the other, the damage should be repaired. This is what Japanese people call ‘kintsugi’: their art of repairing broken cups with gold. What was broken and is repaired, gains value and meaning. The philosophy behind kintsugi, about acceptance of loss and change in life, can also be applied to this sculpture. Regarding the relationship between humans and nature, change is something that has to be dealt with in one way or another…
Commisioned works, Yorkshire, UK 2020