and Jon Williams
My work for Spirits in the Trees
at Forest Hills in 2002 involved carving and assembling a sculpture out
of the cross-section of a diseased trunk removed from this horse chestnut
tree. My initial plan for ReVisited was to create another resurrection
on a grander scaleto transform a different large dying tree into
a sculpture. I invited Jon Williams to work with me because I knew that
a large project required a partner. But when I toured the grounds with
the Forest Hills arborist, Kevin Lynch to find a tree that was scheduled
for removal, everything changed when I saw the horse chestnut tree again.
Two years ago, my sadness over the imminent death of that grand tree was
compelling, and seeing the tree again, in its latest state of demise,
I realized that decline can be an attenuated process and that accommodation
is another means to stave off loss. I came to understand that my relationship
to this tree is ongoing, and that it will be extended in a new way by
working with Jon.
in March and finding that this aged horse chestnut tree was still alive,
but in a precarious state, we were inspired to replace the simple crutch
that was supporting its long heavy limb with a celebratory sculpture.
Our collaboration, in itself part of a generational cycle from teacher
to student, incorporates our shared interests in history, architecture,
craft and memory. We offer this mantel and still life in wood in homage
to the vigor of a hoary survivor that continues to flourish.
& Jill Slosburg-Ackerman
this work to the memory of Harold and Constance Williams and Eleanor Slosburg.
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