Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Stickwork Day 9 at the Hui No’eau

Makawao, Maui - Each time I stop by the Hui No’eau, a little more of the Patrick Dougherty project unfolds. It’s an Alice in Wonderland moment, where there could be white rabbits and Cheshire cats just around the corner.  However my first thought seeing one of the completed crescent shaped sections was not so literary: “Wow, this is like a basket weaving project on steroids.”  Except it’s a delightful hobbit house basket.

An artist friend who had been there all day, briefly updated me. Trained as an architect, she is fascinated by the underlying structure and strength of the project. She said she was watching Patrick pulling a large sapling one way to give it form, which takes a terrific amount of strength, thinking to herself, why is he doing it that way?  Then Patrick is binding other branches or saplings to the back, while moving others yet another way, and then the pattern suddenly reveals itself. It could be a vaulting or a cupola, or a widening or a tightening.  With amazement, she says, “It emerges - you cannot even think it up in the mind. The spherical shapes are so complex and surprising.”  

Here's a short video clip of the view from above, at the end of Day 9.


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