Art For Everyone : Public Art Installations

Read about the whole point of "Looking Around London" at this link here.

Get started with my pictures and thoughts on the London Tree Trunk Tour here.

The Tree Trunk Tour is going to be on Hamilton Road, and I'm blogging its creation here.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

The Learning Tree

On the north side of the Catholic Central S.S. property is 'The Learning Tree'. This carving is one stop on the London Tourism sponsored Tree Trunk Tour. It is a visually dense creation, converting an old tree trunk into a nostalgic trip back to all of the most familiar elements of primary and secondary school.

The sculpture is a very short walk from three other Tree Trunk Tour stops. One block to the south an you can see 'CCH Crusader' and 'Shining Brightly'. One block east is 'Rising Up On Eagle's Wing's'. If you want one stop to see what kinds of things the tour has to offer, I would recommend this as a place to start.

Clicking on any of the pictures will display the full sized version.

Shall we begin our look at the interesting elements on this trunk? Remember, this is all done with power carving tools, mostly chainsaws. From the bottom, we have the alphabet and some crayons. There is a lot of painted on "spot colour", as with the crayons, and it does set the piece apart from some other carvings on the tour.

Another side of the trunk, reminding us of the values taught early in the school system. Love is also represented by the painted heart. Robbin Wenzoski created this work, and on his original website (which now has some technical issues with the pictures), he talked about deciding what elements of learning to include. He didn't leave out much.

The picture on the left shows the south side. I find it interesting that the natural burl in the tree has been left intact. This is also the spot for the official Tree Trunk Tour plug, with the sponsorship logo. The pic on the right shows the north side, where the title is displayed in the same font as the other lettering on the carving. Lots of school related bits are carved in around the two larger elements.

Moving up near the top of the tree trunk, we get a few add-on pieces. I think these really add to the dimension of the sculpture here, though I would suppose a purist may not appreciate wood not from the original tree. I am a practical person. This violin looks great.

And this microscope is my favorite bit. Imagine, going out to the workshop, firing up your machinery and sculpting out a microscope. Just thinking of that on a to do list makes me smile. 'Carve microscope out of wood block.'

The topmost add-on is a mortar board, and a diploma. Some really delicate looking work here to get the curl of the paper diploma.

The other message, delivered in the form of a rebus, is the artist asking the viewer to "Listen to your heart." Not a lesson on any school curriculum, but something that we might want to learn as early as possible in life.

The artist's signature is the block letter RAW ART logo, from Robbin Wenzoski, and the date (not pictured) is 2007. The overall condition of the carving is quite good, without any excessive cracking. The original stain has peeled off in a lot of places, and it may need maintenance in the near future.

There is a wise old owl atop 'The Learning Tree'. I didn't foresee how much looming he would be doing in this shot, but I present it as it was taken.

Looking for more art like this? Well try these links -

Return to the Tree Trunk Tour Overview Page
Check out all the entries using the London Art Map  
Curious about this artist? Try Robbin's Links Page

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