Updated: Mar 2, 2020
So it’s National Tree Week again here in Ireland! Last year in my post Grow our own chairs for national tree week, I instructed ye all to go and create some art by growing a chair out of trees. (I have yet to hear from ye how that went). So this year, why not let the trees themselves make some art!
This is precisely what British artist Tim Knowles did back in 2005 when he started his series of art pieces, simply called ‘Tree Drawings’ Tim’s idea was to create a series of drawings produced using drawing implements attached to the tips of tree branches, the wind’s effects on the tree is then recorded on paper. Like signatures, each drawing reveals the different qualities and characteristics of each tree.
All of his works rely on the logic of cause and effect, as a map of time and a record of actions governed entirely by chance.
Above, 100 pens attached to the branches of a Weeping Willow tree draw onto a circular disc 5.1 metres in diameter and made up of 10 segments.
Similar projects by Knowles include his Vehicle Motion Drawings, where he constructed an apparatus to capture the motion of a car being driven, all the turns, stops, and starts of the vehicle move the pen over the paper. Another is his postal projects, which capture the motion of packages sent through the postal system, using both drawings and photography.
I think my favorite work of his is titled ‘Nightwalk – Valley of Rocks’.
Nightwalks are a series of illuminated walks that Knowles created in the countryside during a new moon (to ensure complete darkness).
Over the period of an hour, the artist walked away from the camera while carrying three wide-beam torches fitted with diffusers. The lights are connected to a 12volt battery in a backpack to prolong their life. His path, along a precarious rocky ridge in the darkness, was illuminated and captured using a long-exposure, large-format photograph. The direction in many of his walks are also dictated by the wind by using various contraptions that plot the direction of the wind.
Photos and info from Tim Knowles website. Be sure to check it out to see more of his amazing work http://www.timknowles.co.uk
So it’s still National Tree Week for a few days and there are still a number of events on this weekend right around the country. To find out what in happening in your area, follow the tree council of Ireland link http://treecouncil.ie/
2011 also happens to be the International Year Of The Forest. You can find out more about this here http://www.un.org/en/events/iyof2011/