ruderal species

I was one of two sculptors invited to Stone Quarry Hill Art Park (near Cooperstown, NY, home of the Baseball Hall of Fame) for three weeks to do projects based on spherical forms. Not long after I arrived I was asked to help the groundskeeper re-weld a lawnmower crack, and I thought about how the gardeners, sculptors, and jurors curate the landscape equally. In a far, and sculpture-less, field of the park I found a pile of dirt and rubble being overtaken by weeds, just near corn rows that the groundskeeper’s brother usually harvests. I explored how well the corn was being mimicked by milkweed, and decided to elevate the weeds, and those of the nearby rubble pile, onto a sphere form - a privileged position that would allow a collection to be as dense as possible. The transplanted milkweed, no longer unwanted and having to mimic to survive. The sphere, installed onto the rubble pile and slightly askew, also supported porous pocketed pH neutral felt that roots love.

I also obtained both an old lawnmower and pine tar - a sticky sap-based material used by baseball players for better grip on the bat. I then coated the mower with the tar, and mowed the path surrounding the site. I disassembled the mower, now coated with sap, weed seeds, and plant fragments, and planted the lawnmower parts onto the sphere.

Copyright © 2010 - 2017 Marin Abell.

Mowing a path to the sculpture site using a lawnmower coated in baseball pine tar.

The disassembled lawnmower’s parts, coated in tar and stuck with weeds fragments, are transplanted onto the sphere.

The sphere under construction.

The sphere under construction.

The sphere from the cornfield.

marin abell