Rune Tribe


I am interested in the ways that art affects us from a distance, from the outside… and how it sometimes takes root in our interior spaces, affecting change from within.

This early installation used mystic ideas about Runes to play with viewers’ art experiences from far, close and inner range.   In some instances, the 24 Runes are said to be ancient tools for divination, with 13 primary characters focusing directly on mechanisms of personal growth.  Here, a stand of 13 trees wears stretched-fabric discs, that change shape in the heat, rain and wind. Each disc is marked with one of 13 primary Rune symbols.

Generally, with land-art situations, people try to touch the art.  They get a certain, first impression from a distance, then approach the art to explore materiality or other formal elements at a closer range.   This was a large installation at a forest’s edge… far-enough away from the exhibition center’s walking trail.  People had to make choices about how they would navigate the high-grass field and which disc to visit.  A guide to the meaning of each Rune was published in the exhibition catalog.  Intention to examine a particular tree affected viewers’ final perceptions about the art, and themselves.