Public Art: Elizabeth Billings Installation!

Tuesday July 3rd was filled with fun and laughter. It was also filled with minor aches and pains: my feet hurt and my legs were sore.The day was spent helping Tunbridge artist Elizabeth Billings install her very large piece in the Chase Breezeway. Susanna Billings, her daughter, and my childhood friend, Ada DeFriez, also assisted in the installation process.

Hundreds and hundreds of sticks were hung from the ceiling resulting in a a very dramatic and magical piece.

Elizabeth had a “map” of the piece which we consulted throughout the installation process. Groups of sticks, were bundled in numbers. Each bundle of sticks, when hung from the ceiling, had a different shape. For example, one bundle moved from smaller sticks, to larger sticks, and then smaller sticks. Another bundle of sticks was short and then got larger. The bark on each stick was removed, so that top portion had no bark, and the bottom half had bark. Each stick had a metal line from which it was hung from the ceiling. The sticks were hung so that they formed a line where the bark stopped.

The groups of different size sticks were hung parallel to one another creating depth and also a sense of movement.

Here are a selection of photos which do not come close to capturing the beauty, movement, or magic of the piece.

The tiny metal “strings” were laced through a hole in the dangling stick, and then through another hole in the stick attached to the ceiling. The wire was wrapped around a smaller stick to secure the dangling stick.

The Bark Stops, Creating a Line
A View of the Entire Piece, Covering the Entire Wall of the Chase Breezeway

I hope you have the chance to walk through the Chase Breezeway and experience the piece.
And fortunately, your feet won’t hurt and your legs won’t be sore from looking at it!