Trees can live a long time, but they eventually die from old age or natural disasters. When urban trees die or are removed for safety reasons, woodcarvers can use the stumps as a canvas for their art, adding life to the streets. Some towns have embraced this unique form of public art.
Orr Park in Montevallo, Alabama, USA, has over thirty carved trees along the walking trail in the park. The trees were carved by local artist Tim Tingle.
In 1983, a storm submerged Montevallo and caused a lot of damage to the forests in Orr Park. The city wanted to remove the damaged tamarack trees, but local artist Tim Tingle turned them into unique sculpture artworks.
Carved a year after Hurricane Katrina, the carvings on tree trunks along Highway 90 in Biloxi, Mississippi, are one of the city’s most popular attractions.
Hurricane Katrina passed through Biloxi in 2005 and destroyed many trees in the area. The trunks were carved into various sculptures by woodcarvers Marlin Miller Florida and Dayle Lewis. Currently, there are over 50 sculpture artworks scattered along the Gulf of Mexico region.
In 2008, Hurricane Ike hit the cities of Galveston, Texas, and destroyed more than 35,000 trees. Many of them have been replanted and a few have been preserved through the efforts of many local woodcarvers. There are currently more than 35 tree stump sculpture artworks scattered throughout this island city.
Since the early 2000s, woodcarvers in Orangeville, Ontario, Canada, have transformed their town’s streets into a public art space by carving onto tree trunks. Currently, the town has more than 60 carvings created by various local artists, scattered throughout the town.
The streets of Truro in Nova Scotia, Canada, were once a place where exotic trees grew for over a hundred years. But then it began to disappear due to disease. To remember this unfortunate loss, the city council began tree carving projects. The town initially had 43 carved artworks but now has more than 50 scattered throughout the town.