The Chicago Tree Project (CTP) is a collaborative initiative between the Chicago Park District and Chicago Sculpture International. The CTP is an annual citywide effort to transform sick and dying trees into vibrant public art rather than cutting them down. Using art as a vessel for public engagement, sculptors transform trees into fun and whimsical experiences for the greater Chicago community. Each year, twelve new trees are installed throughout the city. A complete map and more information can be found at www.chicagotreeproject.org
Artist's Statement: Thanks to Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Mike Dimitroff of the Chicago Park District, and Chicago Sculpture International for the opportunity to create these works of art for the citizens of Chicago. The Chicago Tree Project repurposes condemned trees that would normally be destroyed, breathing new life into them.
Fishing Eagle was carved in two weeks with a chainsaw. I was shown the tree in late November. Two proposals were submitted and the eagle was approved. I was very happy to carve in the wind, rain, and sleet in order to complete the work by mid-December of 2014.
I enjoyed stopping my work and speaking with all passersby as they asked what was happening. I explained that I can see what can be carved in any tree instantly. I simply carve away the excess until everyone can see what was imagined. These sculptures are designed to last several years.