December 2 – World Premiere of Bending Sticks

Posted on December 2, 2015

I love the sculptures of Patrick Dougherty, but I cannot feature a bio of this artist on his birthday because do not know his birthday!

So I am honoring Dougherty's stickwork, his crowd-sourced art, his ephemeral sculptures today, December 2, because this is the anniversary of the 2012 world premiere of the movie Bending Sticks: The Sculpture of Patrick Dougherty.


Dougherty makes swirling murals and huddling villages and castles and cocoons...and all manner of rustic-to-the-point-of-being-magical sculptures out of nothing more than – sticks! He takes truckloads of long, supple saplings that he bends and tucks and piles and twists and weaves together.

Everywhere Dougherty creates his sculptures, he invites ordinary, untrained people to come help. And then he teaches them how to bend, tuck, and twist sticks, just as he has been doing since childhood.

Inviting the community that will house the art piece to actually participate in helping to make the art piece is almost unheard of. And brilliant!

Talk about public art!


When you create sculptures out of sticks, your art work is going to break down over time. The word ephemeral, which means “lasting for a very short time,” is a bit of an exaggeration. But the sculptures are much more temporary than marble statues or granite monuments, for sure. They are designed to be enjoyed as temporary objects that disintegrate and fall apart and become a part of the landscape again.

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