Andy Goldsworthy’s installation Tree Fall (2013) presents visitors with a potent reminder of the relationship between the Presidio’s natural and built environments. Like Goldsworthy’s earlier Spire (2008) and Wood Line (2011), Tree Fall is constructed from a tree removed as part of the Presidio’s park management efforts; in this case, a eucalyptus felled for the Presidio Parkway project has been combined with clay derived from surrounding land. Installed inside the historic Powder Magazine on the Presidio’s Main Post, Tree Fall provides an unexpected perspective on the Presidio and its forest, bringing elements of the outdoors in and making visible what might otherwise be hidden underground.
Creating this imposing installation within the Powder Magazine, an historic landmark–designated building originally used to store munitions, posed unique challenges. In order not to compromise the building’s structure and historical fabric, FOR-SITE worked with structural engineers and fabricators to build an architectural substructure on which Tree Fall was installed. The installation was completed with the help of more than 40 community volunteers.
- Video: Tree Fall
- Installation Views
- Behind the Scenes
Andy Goldsworthy draws his inspiration from a specific place and creates art from the materials he finds close at hand, such as twigs, leaves, stones, or snow. Working in locations as diverse as the Yorkshire Dales and the Australian Outback, the artist strives, in his words, “to make connections between what we call nature and what we call man-made.” Goldsworthy is known to many through the 2001 film Rivers and Tides. In addition to his installations in the Presidio, his works in the Bay Area include Stone River at Stanford University and Drawn Stone at the de Young Museum.