This project started with Pat Lantz, Washington State Parks Commissioner, in response to the decision to cut trees afflicted with laminated root rot that pose a danger to life and property. Unfortunately, the disease is pervasive, with no remedy, so many of the oldest fir and hemlock are slated for removal before the trees fall on their own. Outreach to the arts community is one way to respond positively to the heartbreak created by such a loss. So here we are, a disparate gathering of tree huggers, looking for catharsis and bearing witness to the magnificence of trees.
On August 24th uncounted artists gathered at the park to draw, paint, photograph and talk about the project. Besides the catharsis of the creative process, there is also an opportunity to share our work with the community. Harbor History Museum has graciously offered to accommodate us in a lobby show with an evening reception on September 30, 2011.
Robin Peterson & Margo Macdonald are spearheading the organization of this quickly developing project. We hope that, besides visual artists, poets and writers, schoolchildren and park lovers will respond to our call. The goal is to bear witness to what is here now, but will soon be only a memory. We want the children to know that we did our best to protect their legacy, even when hard choices had to be made. We want their children to know what a centuries old tree looks like, feels like, smells like... how it resonated so strongly with our souls. Dramatic? maybe, but it's their trees and although the Kopachuck Park will be replanted so that a healthy forest will once again grow there, we know that those towering giants will never return.
If you'd like to be involved or want more information, follow along on this blog or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org The project is evolving as we speak and the timeline is short, so let us know how you want to contribute. There are many ways to help, whether you produce a tangible art project or not, this is truly a grass roots event without official sponsorship.
Cathartically, Robin, Pat and Margo