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Tree Museum

I came upon an article talking about Switzerland’s new tree museum, at first I had this wide range of negative reactions.  What have we come to?  Are we already at a place where we have to house these trees because we have damaged the earth so much?  etc etc.  The song Pave Paradise by Joni Mitchell (popularized by Counting Crows)

They paved paradise and put up a parking lot
They took all the trees, and put em in a tree museum
And they charged the people a dollar and a half to see them
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you got till it’s gone
They paved paradise, and put up a parking lot

But as I was thinking about this whole concept while taking a shower, which is where I do my best thinking, I realized a few things.  First off, Switzerland is generally a pretty low impact place, not great, but not bad.  The second thing, the more important thing was thing: A museum is a structure that holds a culture’s/nation’s/etc best achievements.  The objects found in museams are held in a very high esteem, they are symbolic of humanity in a way, we find great value in them.  They inspire, they drive introspection, they ask questions that many are afraid to ask.

So as I come along this thought line I realize what this Tree Museam stands for.  A deep reverence for nature.   We are holding these plant, this earth in the highest esteem, we are saying that of everything that man has created, those things in the natural world we hold high on a pedestal.  I always wonder if aliens form another world where to come to our planet and look at us after we are gone, what would they think?  I think examples like this speak highly for us.  That regardless of our innovations, plants are seen as culturally important.

Maybe I am reading into it too much. What do you think?]

Tree Museum

  1. The song is called “Big Yellow Taxi” and was a huge top 40 hit in its day; you couldn’t get away from it.

  2. There’s nothing new or odd about a tree museum except for the name. They’re commonly called arboretums in the US. I’m a particular fan of the National Arboretum in DC. They have an awesome Bonsai exhibit.

  3. Switzerland – where I worked for 29 years – has many museums to house art. A huge one directly across from the main train station in Zurich, for example.

    This tree museum is obviously meant to exhibit art. Just look at the beauty of the forms the tree in the center has been made into.

    It is also clearly evident that the trees are not “housed”. They grow outdoors. The stone walls create a simple background for each tree or group of trees. The dark green of the leaves contrasts beautifully with the white stone. The wall also allows the viewer to focus on one exhibit at a time.

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