Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Lookout Tree

This is one of my favorite sculptures in the McConnell Arboretum & Botanical Gardens at Turtle Bay. It was created on site in March of 2009 by environmental artist, Patrick Dougherty, during his three week visit. Our natural landscape inspired his design and the willow that he used was gathered locally.

Through his love of nature, Mr. Dougherty began to combine his artistic and carpentry skills. He studied primitive building techniques and started experimenting with the use of saplings as construction material. The Lookout Tree is one of his many natural creations that will give pleasure for many years to come.

He was assisted by Turtle Bay staff and community volunteers. My friend, L, was one of his helpers. Her job was to dip the fresh cut ends of the willow into mud so they would look aged. I can't even imagine how many strips of willow saplings were used for the hut. When I stand inside of The Lookout Tree, I feel like I am in a fairytale. Hansel and Gretel, maybe? No, that would be the gingerbread, candy and sugar house. Hmmm, it'll come to me...it just feels so familiar.


Mrsupole said...

Hi Ronda,

That is a really cool place. Although if it is raining it might not be such a great place to be. I really like the view from inside of it. Now you have me trying to figure out what it reminds me of. Maybe some kind of spaceship that some of the aliens have that use weblike material to make their ships. Or it also is sorta like a teepee because of the whole in the top. Could be a house from the old druids and what they lived in.

Okay that is is, I got no more thoughts of what it could be, but maybe in a few hours I will think of something else. Arboretums are great places to visit.

God bless.

Mrsupole said...

Whoops, I meant a hole in the top. My brain is going. Ugh. These pain pills do mess up your brain somehow. I better get to bed and try to sleep.

Harnett-Hargrove said...

Dougherty did a beautiful piece from existing trees at the Museum of Out Door Art. He asks for extra help and was so much fun watching the development. Great site. Thanks.

Marianna said...

It is like a fairytale! Very beautiful :)

Have a great week Ronda!

Brian Miller said...

that is way cool. it looks like something out of a kids imagination.

Anonymous said...

Ronda, the "Wendy house" from Peter Pan comes to mind, on this. Truly a unique talent, here. Kudos!

Candie Bracci said...

I love that!I think it's so cool really!Have a great day Ronda!LOVE :)

Ronda Laveen said...

Sherry: All good thoughts on what the structure reminds you. I have another shot that would really make you feel that it is an alien design. And both teepee and druid are totally on spot.

H/H: It sounds like you had the pleasure of getting to help on Dougherty's project at the Museum of Outdoor Art. What a treat. I will have to Google that and see what he came up with. Thanks for visiting.

Marianna: You have a great week too. Are you back to school yet?

Brian: It does look like something out of a kid's imagination. Like an illustration from a book.

Subby: Wow! the "Wendy house" is such a good connection. Yes! When I'm on the inside it kind of reminds me of something from Tarzan too.

Candie: Your son would love this willow house. In fact, the arboretum has a whole section just for children.

TechnoBabe said...

It is kind of a sculpture and kind of a big bird nest and sorta tree house. Anyway, it is very cool.

Jill said...

Did my comment go through? Oh, I don't know!
I will post it again!

I think this "hut" is amazing!! How I would like to see it in person!

otin said...

It looks like a Tim Burton movie house!

Reya Mellicker said...

This is incredible! Exquisite! Reminds me of Andy Goldsworthy's work ... do you know of him? Wow.

Very cool.

Love the new banner, too.

Ronda Laveen said...

TechnoBabe: It does look like a combination of all of those things.

Jill: The hut feels as amazing as it looks.

Otin: Tim Burton? Yes!

Reya: No, I don't know of Andy Goldsworthy but will Google him. I wish you could feel the energy in and around The Lookout Tree.

Christina said...

Oh, how I'd love to go visit! I loove Tim Burton style stuff! ;)

Great post, thanks Ronda!

Barbara Martin said...

Interesting way of putting little huts together.

Perhaps the fairytale you are thinking of, is the Three Little Pigs when the wolf blows down their house made of sticks.

Megan said...

That is fascinating-looking. I agree with Otin - very Burtonesque! I'd love to stand inside.

tony said...

A Treemendous House!

Ronda Laveen said...

Christina: I can see this hut being in one of your graphics some day.

Barbara: Three Little Pigs? Yes!!! The house made of sticks.

Megan: The Offspring would love this house. I can totally see it in a Burton movie.

TonY: You are so "punny."