Later this year, artist Spencer Finch will bring a little piece of California’s redwood forests to downtown Brooklyn. In partnership with the Public Art Fund and Forest City Ratner Companies, the artist will use 4,000 young redwoods to create a scaled-down 1/100 version of northern California’s Redwood National Park in an exhibit entitled, “Spencer Finch: Lost Man Creek.” The installation is set to open on Oct. 1 at MetroTech Commons.
Finch will take over a 4,500-square-foot section of MetroTech Commons’ eastern lawn with his miniature redwood forest. The trees will be Dawn Redwoods (Metasequoia glyptostroboides), which are a fast-growing variety considered to be endangered. The shortest of all redwood trees, Dawn Redwoods grow to an average height of 70 to 100 feet tall, but the 4,000 some odd trees in Finch’s installation will range from one to four feet tall, due to their young age.
The arboreal art piece will be a nearly exact recreation of a 790-acre section of Redwood National Park, which is protected and not open to the public. Finch partnered with the Save the Redwoods League to map out the topography and canopy heights of that forest area, and will replicate it as accurately as possible using the young trees. An elevated platform nearby will give visitors a chance to gaze over the miniature forest, and tree fans can also take in the planting from the ground level.
“Lost Man Creek reflects Finch’s fascination with activating the imagination through observation of natural phenomena,” said Public Art Fund Director and Chief Curator Nicholas Baume in a press statement. “For many years he has explored the ineffable qualities of our ever-changing natural world through wide-ranging mediums, but this is his first use of living trees.”
Finch’s tree-stallation will be free to the public and will be open through Mar. 11, 2018. After that time, the trees will be relocated, but their final destination is not yet known.