Tree Of Life - lino print
This linoleum cut was made specifically for a group exhibition in the Greenhouse Café at the Copenhagen University Botanical Gardens, Frederiksberg.
The exhibition will take place the last two weeks of October (weeks 42+43) - the exact dates will follow in an update to this post. Read on for the full story.
As the café is in an old greenhouse that belongs to the Faculty of Life Sciences the theme for the exhibition is "Tree Of Life". This is a very old theme found in many different cultures - many artists have tried their hands with it through the times, and the above is just my modest first attempt.
So, I consider this to be "A Tree Of Life" more than "The Tree Of Life" - even envisioning the latter is a job too complicated for a simple human being such as me.
The story: First, symmetry and ornaments are important in many depictions of the Tree Of Life (especially oriental), the same is "flatness" or lack of depth. So I wanted to acknowledge that, but I also wanted to trick the brain into creating depth, and I did not want to make a symmetrical piece.
As the main challenge I wanted to do something "organic" using very "un-organic" shapes ("squaring the circle" as doing the Tree Of Life itself, is an impossible task). Also, I chose the methaphor of the Maze or Labyrinth, as you never know the endpoints of the various paths you can take in life beforehand. The tree should integrate with the surroundings, making it hard to decide where the tree started or ended.
Finally, the overall shape of the crown of the tree is that of a brain, relating partly to The University, and partly to the fact that you can't really control the events of your life, but with some mental training you might be able to learn to control how you respond to them.
The moiré effects make the print look as if there's a little constant vibration. That way,the print itself looks a little bit alive.
The above is the very first print. Total time spent on design and cutting was around 30 hours.