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Note: Over the next few weeks, we will bring you updates on the progress of the Patrick Dougherty stick sculpture installation at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. We are calling this 3 week transformation of the Anderson Meadow  a “Meadowmorphosis.” We will celebrate the completion of the fantasy-like structure with a naming ceremony at Spring Fling on May 22nd. When the work is complete, you will be able to walk through it and peek out openings. The sculpture will be part of the Garden’s landscape as long as Nature allows, so look forward to enjoying it with seasonal changes (and even lighted at GardenFest!)  To get an idea of the type of structure he is building, take a look at some photos of Patrick Dougherty’s other work.

by Randee Humphrey, Director of Education, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

The tops are forming on the stick sculpture

The tops are forming on the stick sculpture

Patrick Dougherty & Andy Lynch forming a dome.

Patrick Dougherty & Andy Lynch forming a dome.

The Meadowmorphosis, from a distance.

The Meadowmorphosis, from a distance.

Yes, it rained a bit today, but not before we were successful in hauling three more truckloads of sweet gum and maple saplings back to the Garden.  The “short stuff” will be useful in making the fine lines, like hatch marks, that help to “finish” the surface of the sculpture.  Back at the site, our wonderful volunteers continued their devoted work to leaf-stripping and weaving down low, while Patrick and Andy worked up high on the most complex forms.  When the afternoon shower began, the tent provided cover for the most determined strippers.

Later this afternoon we are securing the sculpture site with perimeter fencing and signage that reinforces that this is an active construction zone, for authorized personnel only.  Patrick and Andy leave after work today for a three-day break, and I will not be on site again until Monday morning.  Over the weekend, curious guests will still be able to enjoy viewing the sculpture from the service road, and we’ve added some helpful interpretive signage that explains what is going on.

On Monday, we will still have plenty to do and work will continue.  As Patrick said yesterday, we can always have a “stripping bee” and continue to clean the saplings.  We also will spruce up the rogue ends of sticks that need to be woven into the walls of the sculpture, and spread mulch down on the floor of the sculpture, forming packed pathways.

It’s an ambitious goal, but with an all-out effort I believe we could have all the saplings stripped of leaves before Patrick and Andy resume work on Tuesday morning.

 

 

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