Andree Singer Thompson

Olive Tree Requiem
August 1994 - January 1995

A grove of thirty olive trees in the Oakland Museum roof garden was the site of this installation about world violence. Along with the artists, more than 40volunteer students and members from the community tied 38,000 foot long white ribbons, each representing 100lives lost in world conflict. Individual trees were dedicated to 24 specific areas of the globe, such as Rwanda or Northern Ireland, where ethnic cleansing, war and killing were taking place. A single tree was draped in black ribbons, each signifying a single death, memorializing murders in the city of Oakland during that year. Viewers were invited to hang a black ribbon for someone they knew who had died as a result of violence, and a book was provided for memorial testimonies. Draped in a rustling mantle of white, the trees transformed statistics into a powerful visual image, a silent commentary of the phenomenon of violence in contemporary life.

Oakland Museum Rooftop Garden, in conjunction with the International Sculpture Conference, Oakland, CA

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