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Shade is a thousand-square foot photograph of a garden shade plant, adhered to the propagation house in the UC Berkeley botanical garden using adhesive-backed graphic film. The building structure is aluminum lath 1.5" wide with equal openings between each strip. The print was applied in panels, then sliced and wrapped around the sides and back of each lath.

At the invitation to create an artwork in response to the University’s botanical collection I chose this grey metal structure for its awkward presence in an otherwise naturalistic landscape. Along with the role of shade for plants, my research drew on the original condition of the site as an oak/chaparral landscape and home to indegenous cultures whose intimacy with plants is distinct from that of modern science. I came to appreciate shade, a zone between concealment and visibility that is rich in metaphor, as a working model of my own creative process. For a selection of sketches and photographs from my research click HERE.

A panorama of photographs was made in the garden nearby, lying on the ground looking up - the view of a young plant in the shade of the leaves above. Light and dark values were re-colored to approximate relevance to plant metabolism AND to move viewers from thought to mood in their experience of the work.

Part of an exhibition of site works called “Natural Discourse: poets, artists, architects and scientists in the garden”, “Shade” was in place July 7, 2012 through June 16th, 2013.The project was enabled with the support of Alta Tingle/The Gardener, Avery Graphics , BLIK Design|Build, Rod Freebairn-Smith, Peter Good & Sara Bartholomew; the work was installed by Todd Gilens, Ann Carlson, Katey Crews, Maria D'Agostino, Robert Geshlider, Peter Good, Sam Kornhauser, Bridget May, James Richmond and Alisa Schor.

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