Andy Goldsworthy’s towering sculpture Spire (2008) is constructed from the trunks of 37 Monterey cypress trees felled as part of the Presidio’s reforestation effort. Inspired by the form of church bell towers but rooted in the earth, the artwork evokes the layering of natural and human history in the Presidio’s forest, which was planted by the US military in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
From its 15-foot diameter, Spire rises more than 90 feet into the air. The height of the sculpture and its placement presented unique challenges. Architects, structural engineers, and preservationists were all brought into the process. To ensure stability, the keystone tree was lifted by a 350-ton crane, anchored into a metal sleeve within a 12-foot-deep hole, and surrounded by poured concrete.
- Video: Spire
- Installation Views
- In the Press
Andy Goldsworthy creates ephemeral sculptures and permanent installations using natural materials such as stones, clay, and leaves to draw out the inherent character of a site. His works have been exhibited and collected by important international institutions, including Storm King Art Center, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, and the Tate.