Site Specific Install

Temporary install at Hogback Ridge park

Posted Jan 31, 2014

All of the above blue cardboard pieces were taken by Raecheal Maxwell.

On Feb 13th, 2011, Raecheal and I decided to go to Hogback Ridge Park in Lake County. Our goal was to create a small temporary installation piece using various small pieces I had made in the previous weeks, and then photograph these pieces using nature as our backdrop. More specifically, I was hoping to find a large log that I had used in a previous temporary installation piece. My intent was to use the same setting and the same natural element with different materials in order to highlight the change of the seasons and capture the temporal beauty of a particular place. Today I was hoping to use a multitude of blue organic looking pieces against the bright white background of the snowy landscape.

Nature however, refused to cooperate with our plans. As soon as we got to the park, the sun seemed to fade from the sky. And even worse, the warm weather made traversing the mostly frozen stream treacherous. It was difficult discerning where the ice was thick enough to hold our weight and where it wasn’t. The 45 degree weather was quickly eroding what little support the ice normally would give.

Though weary, like steadfast troops – we carried on. Finally, after having fallen in the creek twice, and after falling in a hole and landing on a sharp rock with my knee – and poor Raecheal, after getting her leg painfully wedged between a couple of sharp slabs of ice, we found a suitable place to begin our install. It wasn’t the log I had been searching for – nature hid my prize in a camouflaging blanket of white snow, it was however, a suitable second choice.

The light was dimmer than we had hoped for, and we were both a little banged up at this point. Fortunately though, the install was an easy one with the remaining snow on the small log proving to be a good support for the individual pieces that later formed its knobby spiny. The two of us took many wonderful pictures of not only this install but also of numerous other natural wonders.

Of course, not every excursion concerning this project is going to be the success we hope for, but I am sure each will be an adventure. Today, we walked away tired from trudging in knee deep snow, bruised, cold and wet – but mainly, we walked away having created something beautiful and having shared an experience that was fun, inspiring, and unique.

For more information on Hogback Ridge park, please click on the following link:

http://www.lakemetroparks.com/select-park/hogback-ridge.shtml

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