June 23 – Anniversary of the Completion of a Tree Troll

Posted on June 23, 2016

I captured this statue with
my husband next to it...
plus strangers behind!

Very cluttered!!
How do I photograph sculptures?

I often – maybe too often – photograph a sculpture with my husband or one of my kids standing in front of it (or behind it, or next to it...you get the idea!).

I figure, if one of my family isn't going to be in the photograph, maybe I should just buy one of the gorgeously photographed postcards of the sculpture, right?

Now I read that a sculptor has deliberately created a work to capitalize on my tendency – which is apparently common: she created her “Tree Troll” sculpture so that it will look good with people kneeling or standing near it, in photos! In her words:

There is a great deal of beautiful art in this city, but most of it only looks good standing by itself. The classic monument style is cluttered and diminished if there are people standing in front. I wanted to create a sculpture whose composition was completed when someone was nearby. It should look at its best with the public involved.”

Cool beans!

And, take a look at her result - WAY cool beans!

The completed Tree Troll, with the artist (above).

The original model Graham made of her concept
included the idea that people would pose with the troll

Some have called sculptor Kim Graham's giant troll an “eco troll” because she made it with reclaimed lumber, repurposed cardboard, packing tubes and lettuce boxes and other discarded items. (And I think I spotted aluminum foil on some of these photos!) He is considered to be paper-mache.

Graham led a team of 25 volunteer artists to built it in her Seattle, Washington, studio.

Once the Tree Troll was finished, on this date in 2006, he travelled around Seattle for two years. He would show up at fairs...at parades...at markets. And when he showed up, people were delighted to see him, pose with him, photograph him!

I love the expression on the Tree Troll.
And I am not a bit surprised that the artist
conceived of the piece as a way to honor
the memory of her beloved father.

The Bellagio Casino in Las Vegas purchased the Tree Troll, to be put on display for a few months around Thanksgiving. I am not sure if the Tree Troll is still displayed at the Bellagio – but since he is kept indoors in a climate-controlled environment, he may well be!

Note that the varying lighting changes
the "look" of the Tree Troll...

I gather that Graham has married and changed her name to Kim Beaton; I also gather that she has made a more permanent outdoor version of her Tree Troll. Check out her website

Also on this date:

Anniversary of Antarctica being set aside for science

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