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Weekly Art Hit: ‘Catch + Release’ by Kristin Tollefson

Weekly Art Hit is back from vacation, and to celebrate the New Year we’re featuring Kristin Tollefson’s festive Catch + Release at the Magnolia Branch of The Seattle Public Library.

Catch + Release (2008) features a large woven, steel-wire branch bearing red “berries,” or beads, made of polyurethane resin. The branch hangs from the ceiling inside the library’s meeting room and gestures towards the large south-facing window and a stainless-steel basket outside in the library’s south garden.  The basket is constructed of stainless steel and contains additional resin beads in its vertical ribs. The branch and the basket connect the library’s interior with the exterior, and allude to the relationship between the library as information provider and its patrons as collectors.

Tollefson states, “The madrona tree around which the original building and landscape architecture was designed provides the conceptual framework for Catch + Release. The suspended branch and its resin beads mimic the mature fruiting arbutus and invite nature inside the building; outside, the basket captures additional berries. The title Catch + Release refers to these actions of fruiting and gathering, paired activities of nature and humans that work as a metaphor for the relationship between library as information-provider and patrons as collectors and disseminators.”

The artwork was part of the Magnolia library’s renovation in 2007 to 2008. The Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs manages the library’s public art program and the artwork is part of the city’s permanent art collection.

IMAGES: Kristin Tollefson; Catch + Release (detail); 2008; blackened annealed steel wire, stainless steel and polyurethane resin; branch:  24”x78”x 33”; basket: 31”x 27”x 27”. Photo by the artist.