Installed artworks: Day 2 – The Snake Bark Tree

The Snake Bark artwork is installed

Snake bark lo res

Close up photograph of the Snake Bark artwork.

David Hackett taking sample with saw of Snake Bark Tree

   Image David Hackett taking a sample from the Snake Bark Tree, 2016.

An early sample programe from the Snake Bark uncovered some fascinating finds by Clodagh Dooley. See below

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Hassett was drawn in particular to Dooley’s beautiful images of the fungal fruiting body (pod like structure). See image below. 

7 snake bark bark007

Other images taken by Hassett with a normal camera also inspired her to create the final artwork that is currently installed in the Snake Bark Tree. See below some of the first photographs taken by Hassett, which show some of the soma/ breathing holes of the tree.

Imagery of the brightly coloured clothing combinations worn by select sub cultures in Japan during the 1990’s also played a part in the selection of the materials and colours for this piece. 

japanese street style

A close up photograph of detailing the of the SThe images below were taken after the art work was installed in the Snake Bark tree. 

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The following slide show includes installation images taken on a very windy but sunny day post storm Ophelia.

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Behind the artworks – the Snake Bark

snakebark maple leaves and stripey bark

Snake bark maples include 18–21 species, and are mostly found in eastern Asia. Snake bark maples are most easily distinguished from other maples by their distinctive bark, smooth when young and usually patterned with vertical alternating dark and light stripes as the tree ages.

snake-bark-tree-wide-view-lo-res 

See image above, the Snake Bark tree,  which is situated opposite the Berkeley Library.  

snake bark bark007 lo res

The main inspiration for the artwork that will be installed in this tree was the pod-like structure, unearthed during the microscopic imaging process. See image above.  

snake-bark-tree-bark-1-lo-res

Also included in the artwork are representations of the oblong lenticles, which are breathing holes visible to the naked eye on the green and white striped bark.  See image above.  

The artist was also inspired by Japanese street culture from the nineties represented in books like Fruits and Fresh Fruits.

The artwork created by Hassett is made from neoprene, lycra and lycra netting.  Images of the final artwork in situ will be posted after the opening on September 29th 2017.  

Opening night – Guided exhibition walk

cb 1 lo res

As part of the opening event for the Trinity College Trees Exhibition there will be a guided walk to all the exhibits by one of the project team.   The walk will take place on Friday 29th September between 5.15-5.45.  There will be a limited number of spaces.  Details on how to sign up for the guided walk will be posted nearer the time.  

If you are unable to book a slot on the guided walk don’t worry the team are also in the process of developing a sound piece that will accompany those wishing to take a self guided walk from Saturday the 30th of September until the end of the exhibition.  Once the walker brings their own headphones they can visit the works at their leisure.   In front of each of the chosen trees the team also plan to have an A4 stand with a brief description of the project and the positioning of each tree on a campus map.

There will be two versions of sound piece depending on which end of the campus you are starting will determine the listing of the trees and which sound piece you click on.  One version of the sound piece covers the walk if you are starting in the main square at the Oregon Maple.  The other version if you are starting at the Science Gallery.  

Included in the audio piece is a brief introduction to the Trinity Trees Project, the trees involved and the artworks commissioned in response to these trees.

Tree spotlight no.3 – Snakebark Maple

snakebark maple leaves and stripey bark

Snakebark maples are maples belonging to the taxonomic section Acer sect.Macrantha. The section includes 18–21 species, and is restricted to eastern Asia (the eastern Himalaya east to Japan) with the exception of one species in eastern North America.

The various species of snakebark maples are most easily distinguished from other maples by their distinctive bark, smooth (at least on young trees), and usually patterned with vertical dark green to greenish-brown stripes alternating with stripes of light green, pinkish or white, sometimes with a bluish tone.

Other characters include stalked buds with just one pair of scales, and flowers on arching to pendulous racemes. The samaras are small, and often numerous.

They are small deciduous trees, typically 5–15 m tall, rarely to 20 m tall, fast-growing when young but soon slowing down with age, and often short-lived; they typically occur as under-storey trees in mountain forests, often along stream-sides.

acer_red_flamingo_snakebark

Some have good fall colour with tones of of reds and orange, while others tend toward a pale yellow which is less impressive.  All are relatively hardy compared to many other species of maples, and many are widely cultivated as ornamental trees for their bark. 

Increased Magnification reveals…

 

The following slideshow highlights the process by which Clodagh choose  an area of interest on the Palm Tree leaf and through increased magnification brought, in this case an individual somata, into sharp focus.

Under each palm leaf there are numerous breathing holes and these are called somata.  They are not unlike the pores on human skin.

Images start at 92 times and end at 1,600 times magnification.

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Another example of this is the seven images Clodagh took of the bark  surface from the Snake Bark Tree.  This time she started at 17 times and ended at 2,720 times magnification.  

Of interest is the pod like structure that Clodagh honed in on.  To date we have been unable to find out what it is but we plan to ask Professor Daniel L. Kelly from the Trinity College Dublin Botany Department to see if he can put a name on this structure/ organism. 

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Tomography – the Crab Apple and Snake Bark trees

 

When we were taking samples in February Clodagh attempted to image the small apple fruit from the Crab Apple Tree. She was unable to do so as it contained too much liquid. It dried out and shriveled up over the month and in March she attempted to image it again. The resultant images I think are well worth the wait.  What do you think?

When I looked at these images and those of the macro photos I took of a Snake bark lenticle (see below) they immediately reminded me of topographical images and models. Also see below for some examples.

snake-bark-tree-bark-1-lo-res

Macro image of Snake Bark lenticle, photo Olivia Hassett

These images then inspired a further trawl through the internet to see what other works have been inspired by tomography. This really got me to thinking about the possibilites of working with stacked layers/ layers  of colour or layers of any kind…..more to follow as I progress this idea further.  

layered card? reflection in knife

Topography definition:

The arrangement of the natural and artificial physical features of an area.

The distribution of parts or features on the surface of or within an organ or organism.