7000 Marks  ·  Barn Razing  ·  Betty Rymer  ·  Break  ·  Caledonia (Carbon Pine)  ·  Connect The Lots  ·  Converse  ·  Cure  ·  Drift  ·   Flo[we/u]r  ·  Forever  ·  Happening at Site A  ·  How to House a Kiln  ·  How to Unmake an American Quilt  ·  Johnny Appleseed  ·  K[ne(e){a}d]  ·  Knob  ·  Laboratory for Material Thinking  ·  Le Musee du Grand Dehors  ·  Long Chain Polymer  ·  New Homestead Act  ·  Paleo.pdf  ·  Past Present Perfect  ·  Past Times  ·  Pleasant Home  ·  Polyculture   ·  Preamble  ·  Project Fielding | Tooling Camp  ·  Project Fielding | Resistance Architecture  ·  Pulling Through  ·  Re.Pur.Pose  ·  Redress  ·  Rutherford Hall  ·  Shock and Awe + New Venus  ·  Siteware  ·  Souvenir  ·  Tapping the Audience  ·  Tea Project  ·  Treacle  ·  Tree Less  ·  Verge  ·  Watershed  ·  Weapons Project  ·  Where There Were Many  ·  With/Draw  ·  Witness Tree ·  Work In Progress  ·  YoYo Magazine

7000 Marks

With Sara Black

NOTE: You can buy a 7000 Marks artist-made pencil here.

In March 2016, on the first rainy day in California in two years, we felled a tanoak tree infected with Sudden Oak Death (SOD) on the Big Creek Reserve. The pathogen Phytophthora ramorum has traveled on the global nursery trade to the US. Trees infected with SOD are quarantined inside the boundary of their county line until processed into lumber and kiln dried. This tightening of boundaries is a move toward environmental conservation, but echoes a rising tide of nationalism, xenophobia and boundary reinforcement on a global scale. Working with scientist and sawyers, we milled and kiln dried the tree so the the wood to  lumber, could be shipped to Chicago where we made it into 7,000 pencils. And this is the real beginning of the project, which will continue until the pencils are fully used, perhaps beyond Sara and my lifetimes.

7000 Marks reflects on Joseph Beuys’ 7000 Oaks, the planting of oak trees in Kassel Germany in 1982, but this time with new questions. The project brings people together to ask, what does it mean to be native to a place, whether human, plant, animal or fungus? The boundaries that we draw on multiple scales (on a cellular level, an object level, to societal and global levels) are in some ways fictions, but our beliefs and rhetoric around them do have real political, social and ecological consequences. How can questions around boundaries reframe our thinking about human migration, globalization, its effects on ecosystem stability and our fear or embrace of the Other?

SPACES Gallery — Cleveland, OH — 2017