Angry Honey Locust

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Project by EPJartisan posted 11-06-2014 08:04 PM 3181 views 19 times favorited 36 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This sculpture has a very long story, but it really speaks for itself.
This is a self portrait of me screaming as a honey locust tree.

They were going to chop down the Honey Locust trees in our courtyard. These are majestic and beautiful trees right outside our third floor condo. The real reason we bought this place was for the feeling of being away from the world and in the tree top of a forest. They are home to squirrels and finches, robins and cardinals, bats, fireflys and cicadas. The leaves turn this amazing yellow in the fall and shimmer in the sun after a short summer rain. I love these trees.. and could not believe that they were “unhealthy and needed to be removed.” A condo wide building war ensued and we are a bunch of very smart people… science, poetry, sound logic, history, and aesthetics for resale… the resolution was to remove 30% of the top foliage for more light to reach the lower units. The trees are still there and very healthy and happy.

This was early in my woodworking and I had just started to learn about wood, trees, and forest ecology. Researching everything about Honey Locust trees was my first tree obsession. I became friends with Arborists and Forestry specialists. due to this tree. I learned so much, that it later dawned on me that I am very much like a Honey Locust tree. Cultured into city life the once Thorny Locust, lost it’s need for thick defensive thorns to ward off deer and other animals after the leaves and soft twigs…. and became the peaceful and city dwelling Honey Locust.

But remove 50% of their canopy and they still sprout enormous thorns. Hit them with a car.. thorns. Poison = thorns, disease = thorns. A lovely tree which I can completely relate to.

I am one of those people who easily smiles, whistles while walking, and seems to just love life. Inside I held a deep anger at the world of humans… a great disappointment of the things people do and say to one another. People are absolutely horrible to each other. Its was a fear that has lead me into uncontrolled violence and the need to run away and hide, even to extreme measures. It held me back from happiness and success in my career. I am happy to not be at that place anymore and can use my art and talent to express and create what I want. So this is my inner anger rendered in complete botanical detail of a Honey Locust tree.. only in white gesso, grey graphite, and bloodwood leaves (blood red instead of light green or yellow)

~ Honey locust branches and thorns
~ Honey locust wood base ~ steam bent
~ Hydrocal Plaster and canvas soaked in wall sculpting plaster
~ 1,150 Bloodwood leaves (each is five pieces of veneer) and white wire wrapping
~ White Gesso and Graphite

I am also proud that it is being featured in the soon to be released music video “One Time Offer” by Pound of Flesh.
And will be on display at the Oak Park Arts League Nov 14-Dec 5.

-- " 'Truth' is like a beautiful flower, unique to each plant and to the season it blossoms ... 'Fact' is the root and leaf, allowing the plant grow and bloom again."

36 comments so far

View Druid's profile


1230 posts in 2212 days

#1 posted 11-06-2014 08:16 PM

Wonderfully done, and the story behind it is just as marvelous.
Great piece of expressive art.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View RogerBean's profile


1598 posts in 2370 days

#2 posted 11-06-2014 08:28 PM

This is the finest use of a honey locust tree that I have ever seen.

-- "Everybody makes mistakes. A craftsman always fixes them." (Monty Kennedy, "The Checkering and Carving of Gunstocks", 1952)

View madts's profile


1661 posts in 1756 days

#3 posted 11-06-2014 08:29 PM

Very well done Sir.

-- Thor and Odin are still the greatest of Gods.

View Jeff_in_LSMO's profile


329 posts in 1757 days

#4 posted 11-06-2014 08:42 PM

crazy, and slightly freddy kruger

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 966 days

#5 posted 11-06-2014 08:43 PM

Nice job Eric! I too like the honey locust. Being involved in approximately 40 Forestry Management Plans with IL landowners, I always stressed the importance of the honey locust as a Winter food source for the wildlife. Many landowners wanted to cull these trees until they learned of the benefits.

View steve_in_ohio's profile


1195 posts in 1027 days

#6 posted 11-06-2014 10:31 PM

wow, that is amazing, great job

-- steve, simple and effective

View DaleM's profile


952 posts in 2801 days

#7 posted 11-06-2014 10:50 PM

Really cool mix of tree and and sculpture. I shared your story with my wife too.

-- Dale Manning, Carthage, NY

View NaFianna's profile


499 posts in 2443 days

#8 posted 11-06-2014 11:16 PM

A beautiful piece. Well done

-- Cad a dheanfaimid feasta gan adhmad.......?

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2612 posts in 3009 days

#9 posted 11-06-2014 11:46 PM

Crazy Cool!!! Outstanding Artistry!

-- Dennis Zongker

View cstrang's profile


1829 posts in 2585 days

#10 posted 11-07-2014 02:15 AM

wow, amazing job!

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View Dusty56's profile


11800 posts in 3105 days

#11 posted 11-07-2014 02:25 AM

Very impressive and so cool : ) I’m sure different lighting could make it look pretty scary.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View mmh's profile


3664 posts in 3139 days

#12 posted 11-07-2014 02:41 AM

A very “honest” and intimidating piece. I am not easily attracted to intimidating art, but, I do like it and I especially like the story within.

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


17570 posts in 3093 days

#13 posted 11-07-2014 02:50 AM

Awesome work! Definitely out of the box ;-)

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View gfadvm's profile


14924 posts in 2107 days

#14 posted 11-07-2014 03:08 AM

A magnificent piece of art and a great story to go with it! You didn’t mention the beautiful flower clusters with the amazing fragrance in the spring.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View hunter71's profile


2689 posts in 2603 days

#15 posted 11-07-2014 03:12 AM

All I can add it WOW!

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

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