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Galveston is the Next City to Get Blue Trees
"I realized that forests are the lungs of the world," Konstantin Dimopoulos said in a press release that announced his most recent art installation in Houston, Texas: trees painted blue. Not pink not green, but ultramarine! This is a vibrant color to make the viewer think about a world without trees and deforestation.
The press release pointed to a Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations report three years ago that said 32 million acres of forests were lost due to natural causes or were cleared for other uses between 2000 and 2010. That means 3.2 million acres were lost per year during that time frame.
"Through my work I am striving to address global issues and provide a visual platform to effect change," said Konstantin Dimopoulos. "So many universal concerns seem larger than an individual's power of influence, and I want to evoke in people the idea that we can all contribute to change in a positive way."
Depending on the season the leaves of the painted trees could be a color that provides a stark contrast to the blue, like red or orange or they can just be green which still provides visual interest.
As time and the weather take their toll on the social art installation the biologically and environmentally safe blue color fades and the trees are no longer eye-catching. In a way they become invisible and because we fail to see the trees we begin to take their presence for granted.
That makes a whole lot more sense to me than watching Tilda Swinton sleep in a glass box at the MOMA in New York for her performance art piece called “The Maybe.”
The Houston Arts Alliance asked Dimopoulos to paint trees in the region as a response to the loss of trees due to Hurricane Ike and a drought in 2011. I don't know who asked Swinton to sleep at the MOMA but maybe she just needed a nap?
Over 100 local volunteers helped Dimopoulos paint large stands of crepe myrtles between Allen Parkway and Memorial Drive at Waugh Drive; the trees at the historic Houston Parks and Recreation Department Gragg Building; and a single tree at the Houston Arts Alliance offices last week.
"I am delighted that this international initiative directed by Konstantin Dimopoulos is the next reiteration of HAA's Temporary Art Program realized in public spaces throughout the area," stated Houston Arts Alliance CEO Jonathon Glus. "Houston is an international city, and it is important for us to be mindful of environmental changes affecting our region and our world."
The next town that will have a selection of their trees painted is Galveston. If you’d like to paint trees in Galveston this week you can register to volunteer over at bluetreestexas.org.
For more information about Dimopoulos, previous Blue Tree installations, and his other works please visit kondimopoulos.com.
1944: Camano Class Light Cargo Ship was laid down for the US Army as FS-289 at Wheeler Shipbuilding in Whitestone, NY.
1955 - 1963: Used as a cargo supply ship for the Texas Towers, a network of advanced radar stations located off the Eastern Seaboard. In 1957, Capt. Sixto Mangual was commander of the AKL-17 and in 1961 it was rechristened the USNS New Bedford. The New Bedford, sailing out of State Pier, was keeping vigil when Texas Tower No. 4 callapsed off the New Jersey coast during a January 1961 nor'easter.
2006: Design of the Tesla Turbine began on June 11, 2006. The Sea Bird was sold by Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service for commercial service.