EYES OF THE BEHOLDER




There is a small private park located near a golf course in the Pensacola area of Northwest Florida, USA.  It featured an example of environmental installation art with a Dada influence.  The design and art institute of a school on the East Coast  recognized the feature as being an example of Dada influenced art.  It consisted of many dozens of golf balls arranged around the natural setting.  Balls were fixed to stumps or cut in half to appear as if imbedded in trees!




 
Installation art modifies the way an area is experienced.  It can be used in public or private settings, indoors or out.  Sculptural materials are used to create an experience.

Environmental art consists of works used to involve the participation, or surround, the spectator.  You might recall examples of environmental art such as that done by  Christo when he created a 24 mile curtain across Marin County, California.  He and his wife would later create The Gates in Central Park.  It was a 23 mile series of gates displaying a saffron colored fabric.

Dada art or Dadaism can be traced back to the era of WWI and can be characterized as anti-art.  Some see it as a movement that used travesty, sarcasm and incongruity to criticize (and belittle) conventional cultural and aesthetic values.  Some people see Dadaism as influencing, or at least leading up to, such art movements as Surrealism and Pop Art.  I imagine the amount of influence of Dadaism would vary with the individual artist.  I can see where the works of such artists as Andy Warhol could be seen as influenced by Dadaism.





Was this particular work an example of Dadaism,  Surrealism or Pop Art—or even something else?  Art, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.  You must decide.   What does the creator of this work mean by it?  It doesn't matter.  It's only important that you decide what it means, if anything.  Meaning is also in the eye of the beholder.

This local art work was occasionally vandalized by trespassing golfers who must at first have thought they have discovered the mother lode of lost balls.  Many attemped to return balls they have mistakenly removed and several people have asked to contribute balls to the display.  Some stumps that have been vandalized are left purposely empty by the creator as part of the display.  There is a possible element of some kind of performance or participation art in this interaction. 
     
The creator frequently receives complimentary remarks of appreciation and most who respond, find it interesting or humorous.  Good enough.  Humor too, is in the eye of the beholder. 

High winds caused parts of the massive tree to fall, crushing the park bench and lamppost.  No one was injured and there is a chance the displaywill be rebuilt.





Dedicated to the first environmental artist!!