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CITIES - sculptures and land art
Painting tree trunks white is a method of tree protection which has been practiced for hundreds of years. Lime sulfur has been proven to protect against fungus and insects. The reflective white also keeps barks of young trees from splitting in the sunlight; that is why nowadays latex paint is often used. Old Dutch farmhouses sometimes had linden trees grown in a flat plane in front of their facades. In that way they protected the houses from getting too warm in the sunlight. Their trunks often painted white with lime. Many years ago I stopped at one of these farmhouses and asked an old man why they were white. He didn't actually know, but it had always been done so he continued doing it. I think that the old Dutch cleanliness may have been a reason.
This photograph shows the situation a few days before the project was demolished. I was warned about this only less than a week in advance. As I had planned from the beginning I wanted the trunks of the willows painted white when they would reach the age of around ten years. This was to be done to the same height as the stainless steel focal points of the ellipse - 125cm. The demolition of part of the facade of the building and removal of my artwork was postponed a few days at my request as I wanted to document the situation where the willows would have their white trunks.