Calder shattered beech 2

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Dialogues with trees

Howden Park Centre, Livingston 4th November 2016 - 23rd April 2017

In my latest exhibition I present a collection of drawings which are the end products of my dialogues with trees.

Throughout their often very long lives, trees are engaged in a dialogue with their surroundings, with the ground they grow in, the prevailing weather, the other plants, animals and people that live alongside them.  There are physical clues in their forms that provide a record of that dialogue.

Similarly, the process of drawing is one of dialogue – it is a record of the interaction between the artist and the subject, the eye and the tree, the hand, the paper and the mark making tool.  As John Berger says, a drawing of a tree is not just a tree, but ‘a tree being looked at’.  All my work has intense looking at its heart.

More information on the exhibition and residency here »

Recent

Tree Stories

The Art House, Sheffield, 24th October - 6th November 2015

This South Yorkshire Biodiversity Research Group (SYBRG) community project was led by Christine Handley and supported by Professor Ian D. Rotherham (Sheffield Hallam University). Funded by a grant from the Arts Council, it set out to record marked and worked trees and enabled SYBRG to work with two artists at community events. The collected Tree Stories were used as inspiration to create new drawings, poems and prints which were displayed in an Art Exhibition at the Art House in Sheffield.

The Tree Stories project takes a closer look at the mysterious marks, objects and tree ‘graffiti’ that appear on trees. The importance of these markings extends from prehistoric times and this ancient form of communication has survived to the present day with people still using trees to record messages and leave objects embedded in them. These trees with their markings can be found in surprising places, from inner city Victorian parks and gardens to great parkland landscapes in the British countryside. They may contain evocative stories and pictures distorted by time or bold deeply incised designs marking territory, sending messages across the years. Others become covered with small objects, coins, left year after year perhaps as offerings with echoes from a dimly remembered past. The project recorded some of these and inspired the works by Tansy Lee Moir and Sally Goldsmith.

Photographs of the opening event »

More information about SYBRG »

Professor Ian D. Rotherham's blog »

More about Tansy's work on Tree Stories »