Crystal Bridges, a beautiful new museum in Bentonville, Arkansas. It is spectacular!
Just outside the front entrance, there is a sculpture of a tree shaped like a living tree, looking as realistic as a stainless steel tree can be. It is alone, sparkling in the sunlight, its naturalistic branches resemble the trees in the background. Maybe the artist found inspiration in the aluminum Christmas trees that were popular in the 1960’s. The sculpture, “Yield” 2011 is by Roxy Paine.
Since it was a beautiful spring day, we decided to take a walk on the trails outside the museum. The trail we took was a combination of a botanical garden and a sculpture garden, since all the plantings were clearly labeled and there were so many sculptures integrated into the garden. As we walked past this tree I looked for its identification tag and realized that it wasn’t a living tree at all. Unlike the tree sculpture in front of the museum, this one was part of the landscape. When I looked at its label, it was a bronze sculpture, “Tour de Apple Tree” (2010) by George Dombeck. Giving it a second look, I saw the elements of a tree, branches and twigs, but near the top was a bicycle! It made me wonder how a bicycle could get parked in a tree outside OZ. Now the the title makes sense.
The trail ends at the town square of Bentonville. The 21C Museum Hotel, just off the square is full of art. Outside the hotel, I saw the third “tree” of the day. Unlike Tour de Apple Tree, there was not question about this one. It was not real at all.