Art installations bring humans closer to nature

Signal of change / Art installations bring humans closer to nature

By Heidi Hauf / 02 May 2017

Canopy Tower is a 16-foot-tall sculpture hanging high enough off the ground for one person to stand inside by artist, John Grade. It could be funneling messages from the trees down to the viewers, or providing us with a giant megaphone to dispatch our ideas into the sky—either way, the structure seems to want to act as a channel between humans and nature. The installation in Betty and Edward Marcus Sculpture Park at Laguna Gloria, Austin in 2015, was inspired by the shape of coccolithophore—a type of phytoplankton that have calcium carbonate scales.

As Canopy Tower ages, the trees will grow over the ends of the bolts that fasten the steel arcs at top to the trunks. The changes—adaptation, degeneration—are welcomed by the artist, and are a recurring theme in his work.

So what?

Can art installations like this help us to feel more connected to nature? Can they help us to understand the interconnections and communication between organisms in natural systems, perhaps even seeing ourselves as part of those natural systems?


What might the implications of this be? What related signals of change have you seen?

Please register or log in to comment.