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Smith's vision of the body as a fluid vehicle for intimating life - and death - suggested the School of Medicine as fertile territory for Standing, her Stuart Collection project. From the beginning her ideas evolved in relation to the site between the Medical Teaching Facility and the Basic Sciences Building amidst eucalyptus trees, sloping lawns and curving pathways. Smith's original idea of a figure on a classical column soon evolved to become a figure on a cast tree trunk. A dead tree was located on campus, removed and delicately cast at San Diego Pre-Cast Concrete. So refined is the casting that it has captured the network of beetle trails that once lay under the thin eucalyptus bark -- a feature that originally drew Smith's interest. The paths of these insects, which may have played a role in the tree's death, evoke notions of veins and capillaries; the trunk's artery-like roots reach into the water below. Stripped of its bark and exposed through time and decay, it is remarkable in the way that it calls out the live eucalyptus around the site, thus embracing - even composing - the entire area. Pathways were reconfigured and added by the artist to extend the arterial imagery.
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Digital Library Development Program, UC San Diego, La Jolla, 92093-0175 (https://lib.ucsd.edu/digital-library)
Architecture and City Planning
Drawings and Watercolors
Garden and Landscape
Graphic Design and Illustration
Sculpture and Installations
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- Cohen, Becky (American photographer, contemporary)