2010 tree constellation
Mother Earth Flower Project, the Reason for the Flowering Huipile (aka Tree Constellation) is a grass-roots community remediation-through-planting in marginalized spaces project, in south-central Los Angeles, Watts, Compton, linking communities of ‘guerilla gardeners’, the work focuses on trees as family members, as healers for families impacted by gun violence in the inner city, communities forgotten by urban infrastructural planning and maintenance. The Reason for the Flowery Huipile, looks to remediation of a rural and urban landscape, and as an act of solidarity with those farmers in a nuclear landscape who continue to plant their indigenous seeds despite radioactive contamination of land. The planted trees are points on a constellation map.
"Tree Constellation" is an art installation using fruit trees as the constellative media, for a map of resistance and remediation to personal tragedy in south-central Los Angeles. It is a grass-roots community remediation-through-planting in marginalized spaces project, and is an act of solidarity with farmers in a nuclear-polluted landscape of the American southwest who continue to plant their indigenous seeds despite radioactive contamination of Homeland.
TreeConstellation is a grass-roots act of committed solidarity with those farmers and gardeners who live in a nuclear-polluted HomeLand (northern New Mexico), and yet continue to plant their indigenous plants despite radioactive contamination from the nuclear bomb industry. Acts of solidarity with others facing the seemingly hopeless goal of remediation; to put back together what has been broken apart by urban and/or state violence, here, is planting food bearing trees and plants.
trees and plants here are the earthly stand-ins for stars, celestial beings, gaseous rocks, the things of legend, folklore, and dreams. Trees like stars, are each a statement of hope, a Living testimony and commitment to life in all its species manifestations, in a place where violence threatens life and livelihoods. Planting, trees, the acts that nurture and make real, linked with an outline in the city and in the mind, creates a map, a spatial connection through work of hands and the transformative act of work.
Constellation’s namesake in Compton is Eagle Tree, a 200 year-old sycamore, named for the family of Eagles who nested there every year, witness to the successive waves of changes in southern California from its original desert to its contemporary neglected inner-city reality. From desert, to large ranches, family farms, single-family homes, apartment dwellings; from sustainability to poverty, fresh air to smog, peace to violence, under a temperate climate, the tree is the witness.