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View along the West Roxbury Parkway
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View from within the Skirt
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Diagram of a Skirt
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Material explorations

Bioplastic Skirt Installation

Oftentimes when we approach nature, we focus on protecting it from mankind. In early forms of my studio project seen above, I sought to protect small trees as they grew. But most plant species have existed for thousands of years before modern industry threatened them.

Instead of protecting trees, I propose we instead focus on respecting their power and might. Inspired by the tensile plastic structures of Frei Otto, I created a structure which relies entirely on the strength of a tree, and invites visitors to understand the organism in a more complex way. From the outside, these bioplastic tents appear wide and mysterious, bringing the overwhelming size of most adult tree canopies down to the ground. Upon entering, the viewer's experience is defined entirely by the tree. The imposing trunk dominates the tight space, and the sound and scent of decaying leaves overwhelms the senses. As one moves around the tree, the hole in the film frames the overwhelming canopy and blurs the line between inside and out. As time passes, the structure decays but the tree remains, still growing unfettered.