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Photo is a test of the Blued Trees mark (photo by Frank Spinelli)

Blued Trees is an ambitious project launching on June 21st (the summer solstice). It is led by ecological artist Aviva Rahman, but involving other artists. Her creative enquiry revolves around the question “where might there be a point of confluence, a trigger point, between public policy and ecological art practice?” She was particularly interested when a group, the ecoart dialog (which she co-founded) asked “Is it possible to copyright trees?” In other words, can an artist claim trees – if bred, planted or altered with certain aesthetic and conceptual intentions – as their own intellectual property? This was inspired by the case of Pieter van Tiesenhausen who managed to stop an oil pipeline being built for this reason. The legal test in this and other cases was around the quality, permanence and seriousness of the artist’s intention. This leads to the question: what is the possible relationship between “good art,” and public good when it comes to environmental protection?

This led to the creation of the Blued Trees project. It begins with the distribution of trees marked with a particular blue zigzag, along 1/3 mile corridors in the path of fossil fuel activities.

a number of landowners who own forested property in the path of the Algonquin natural gas pipeline will actively participate in Blued Trees. 20 artists or more will simultaneously launch affiliated events internationally ,with visual, performative and musical aspects. For example, there is a musical symphony based on a repetition of the wave form that will be painted on trees. The resulting copyright on land would elevate the “public good” of ecosystems over fossil fuels.

I presume that there would be nothing (like copyright for instance) stopping anyone carrying out their own action in support for the idea of Blued Trees. However, to check that out, contact Aviva.

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