Installed artworks: Day 7 – The Cherry Blossom Tree


IMAG5139David Hackett talking about the installed Cherry Blossom Tree artwork during the guided walk in September 2017

Most of the varieties of Cherry Blossoms have been cultivated for ornamental use and do not produce fruit. Along with the chrysanthemum, the cherry blossom is considered the national flower of Japan. Again the microscopic worlds of the trees form the backbone of this artwork. Hassett’s focus on scale and miniaturisation led her research to the arts forms of the Japanese Bonsai and Chinese Penjing.  See below some of the SEM images taken from the Cherry Blossom Tree.

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For this artwork Hassett chose to focus on the reproductive system of the Cherry Blossom, specifically the pollen grains. Pollen grains carry the male reproductive information and are unique in shape and pattering depending on the species.  See below SEM imagery taken by Clodagh Dooley of the  groups of and individual pollen grains.

In a nod to the millions of identical pollen grains to be found on the Cherry Blossom Hassett decided to create an artwork using multiples of the same material. Hundreds of recycled plastic net plant drainers were manipulated and grouped together not unlike how the the bonsai control and force huge number of flowers together to shape blocks of colour.

Alongside the white plastic netting Hassett also used neon pink and green wired Lycra netting for this artwork.  A huge thank you to Recreate who salvage large quantities of reusable materials from businesses for use in creative projects.  See images below of the installed artwork.

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Guided walk 29/09/17 open to bookings

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Guided walk 29/09/17 at 5.15 open to bookings on Eventbrite

Follow the link below to book a free ticket. Spaces are limited so book early.

Guided walk, Trinity College Trees Exhibition, 29th September at 5.15

Event Description:

As part of the opening event of the Trinity College Trees Exhibition one of the project team will give a guided walk to the artworks installed in eight trees on the Trinity College Campus.

Hear about a select number of wonderful TCD trees and the scientific and artistic inspirations behind the artworks on display. This walk also forms part of the TCD PROBE event for European Researchers Night.

There is a limited number of places on this guided walk. Meet at the main arch in front of the main square, Trinity College Dublin at 17.10, walk begins at 17.15.

Alternatively anyone who would like to visit the exhibition on their own time can download a recorded sound piece outlining information on the trees and the artworks. Visit trinitycollegetrees.wordpress.com.

The Trinity College Trees Exhibition opens on Friday September 29th and runs until Sunday October 29th 2017. Exhibition open during normal Trinity College opening hours.

Opening night – Guided exhibition walk

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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.

About this blog

This blog celebrates a specific selection of the stunning selection of Trees in Trinity College Dublin.

Early in January of this year the Trinity College Trees team in conjunction with Dr. Conor Buckley of TCD initiated a new study on the two large Oregon Maple trees in College Square.   This 2018 project will build on the research and success of their 2017 project, which involved eight tress (including one of the Oregon Maples in the 2018 project) on the Trinity College Dublin campus.  

This blog aims to outlines the conservation, scientific and artistic development and outcomes from both the 2017 and 2018 projects.  

The Trinity College Trees Team are tree specialist (David Hackett), scientist (Prof. David Taylor), microscope expert (Dr. Clodagh Dooley), bioplastic specialist (Dr. Conor Buckley) and artist (Olivia Hassett) all based in Trinity College Dublin.

The team aim to make visible fascinating microscopic elements of the trees. This will allow for an unique way of engaging with the trees in an urban setting.

In 2017 in response to the research and microscopic imagery collected the artist created of a series of innovative art works, which were installed in eight trees throughout the campus. This exhibition launched in September 2017 and was supported by a self guided walk with a supporting audio piece that offered detailed information on each tree and the inspiration behind the installed artworks.  

For the 2018 project the team propose to undertake a programme of scientific and arboreal sampling and tests to explore the structural integrity of the two majestic but fragile Oregon Maple Trees in College Square.  Proposed artistic responses will include a months display of new artworks installed in both trees, live performance and indoor exhibition on the TCD campus.