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If A Tree Falls: Art Of The Boundary Oak

October 30, 2021 - February 13, 2022

A woven wood sculpture, rising to a point, rests basket-like in a white gallery space.

If a Tree Falls: Art of the Boundary Oak memorializes the City of Walnut Creek’s signature Valley Oak, which tragically fell during a massive windstorm in October 2019. As a tribute to the tree’s long life and rich history, which spanned 325 years, the artists in the exhibition created artworks from its wood, offering this monumental being a second life.

In addition to honoring the tree’s grand legacy, this timely community show provides a much-needed celebration of local artists and highlights the unifying forces of nature. If a Tree Falls includes 64 emerging, midcareer, and established Bay Area artists who work across disciplines from painting and drawing to woodturning and carving. Each artwork—made exclusively for the show—incorporates pieces of Walnut Creek’s beloved Boundary Oak, providing visitors a rare opportunity to see how artists interpret the same base material in different ways.

If a Tree Falls: Art of the Boundary Oak underscores just how diverse an artistic approach to the same material can be, with widely unique techniques and conceptual frameworks. Yet, the works share a respect for a life force that existed for over three centuries. The beauty of this exhibition is that the Boundary Oak tree will continue to exist through the thoughtful reimagining of the Bay Area artistic community.

Participating Artists: Irene Bee Kain, Danielle Benoit, Chas Blackford, Bonnie Bonner, Peter Brown, Shelley Carlisle, John Cobb, Brian Condran, Suzy Elsworth-Heithcock, Kathleen Farros-Hoeppner, Jane Fisher, Garth Fry, Susan Fuller, Bushra Gill, Lisa Glicksman, Louis Goldman, Annette Goodfriend, Ellen Håkensen Faris, Clint Imboden, Michael Jesse, Ken Joye, Kyung Min Kim, Mark Knize, Maureen Langenbach, Peter Langenbach, Sarah Lee, David Lew, Paul Lin, Christine Loehrlein, Maggie Mackinlay, Robert Mackinlay, Jeffrey Maylath, Claudette McDermott, Lisa McElroy, Ann McMillan, Peter McNeill, Julie Meridian, Andrew Messer, Michelle Mongan, Tsungwei Moo, Elise Morris, David Morris, Leslie Norgren, Sheridan Oakes, Michael Palace, Celena Peet, Sam Perry*, Christopher Pickslay, Daniel Powell, Anne Ross, Jack Shipman, Mary Shisler, Daniel Southard, Ariel Strong, Kerima Swain, Nick Taylor*, Netsanet Tesfay, Beau Thomas, Kelsey Thomas, Josef Twirbutt, Adon Valenziano, Marc Waidelich, Ruth Waters and Kim Wolfe.

Image Credits: Sam Perry, Basket, 2021, wood, 29 x 38 x 23 inches; Bushra Gill, Recalling the Golden Hour, 2021, mixed media on collagraph print and wood, 22 x 15 x 1 inches; Adon Valenziano, Totem, 2021, oak wood, concrete, agates and bronze, 43 x 12 x 9 inches.


Bedford Gallery
1601 Civic Dr.
Walnut Creek, CA 94596 United States
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