Work Out

DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum is proud to present its inaugural outdoor exhibition. Futurefarmers, Fritz Haeg, Jane D. Marsching, and Andi Sutton have each created alternative, sustainable engagements with the landscape in deCordova’s Sculpture Park. By using the Sculpture Park’s land as their primary material, the four projects on view ask us to rethink our relationship to our immediate and global environments through the less traditional art practices of farming, building, and research. While these artists are driven by social and environmental issues of climate change, local agriculture, and self-sustainability, they draw on a strong artistic tradition of extending the boundaries of what and where art can be.

Collaborative workshops and programs are integral parts of each installation, underscoring the importance of community and communal efforts in effecting change.

WORK OUT features four new commissions:

Futurefarmers present Tree University, an outdoor classroom in which deCordova’s fallen trees (originally toppled during Hurricane Sandy) are used to explore all the creative possibilities that can stem from a single tree. The tree will slowly disappear, as the artists whittle and carve away its pieces into new objects (including pencils and a canoe), but its spirit will live on in these communal objects and experiences.

Fritz Haeg’s Domestic Integrities explores the ways in which local resources are harvested and brought into the domestic interior landscape of the home. As part of the project, a circular, 19-foot wide wild garden will be created in the Museum parking lot. Plants and vegetables grown in the parking lot garden will be presented inside the adjacent gallery, The Square, on a hand-crocheted rug made of used and discarded textiles.

Jane D. Marsching’s Field Station Concordia takes the form of a field station created from reclaimed materials in the dimensions of Henry Thoreau’s cabin at Walden Pond, located down the road from deCordova. The structure operates as a field station for the artist for gathering data about the local ecology in the form of observations, handmade and virtual representations, and texts and maps. It gives visitors the opportunity to consider themselves citizen scientists. Check out photos from Jane D. Marsching’s WORK OUT program for April Vacation.

Andi Sutton’s Assisted Flagration features nearly 100 handmade, seed-spreading sculptures shaped like pink flamingos. The pink flamingo-shaped seed-sowing structures are made from biodegradable material that, with time and weather, drop seeds of endangered wildflowers, grasses, and perennials. The installation examines the issues of diversity, belonging, migration, preservation, and the future of “native” and “local” species in the face of climate change.

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.