You know how everyone’s claiming to be an artist these days? Make-up technicians, hairdressers, gallerists, your kid sister, that crazy aunt who does crocheted landscapes? Yeah? Well now even plants are getting in on the game. British artist Tim Knowles attaches pens to the tips of tree branches and sets up an easel just within reach of the waving “paintbrushes.” As the tree branches sway and get blown around, the pens trace out black arcs and dots on the papered easels. There’s a minimalist poetry to the works themselves that’s pretty cool.
But what I find really interesting about Knowles’ project is the documentation. The photographs Knowles takes of his artist-trees are a strange mix of idealized landscapes, anthropomorphized nature and a bizarre dollop of a kind of post-Victorian sexuality: the fetish of an artist taking on nature … when the artist is nature. Check out this tree doin’ its thang:
Isn’t that hott? But how do these trees compare to other artists trekking out to the wilderness to portray their own version of nature?
[Note: Courbet link here]
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