Sacred Place Directory

UMBC: Joseph Beuys Sculpture Park


The Joseph Beuys Tree Partnership was inspired by German visual artist Joseph Beuys’ (1921-1986) extensive 7000 Oaks tree planting project. Joseph Beuys used an image of an oak tree on a postcard announcing his original project in 1982, and wrote below the tree: “An Idea Takes Root.”

Community park

UMBC
1000 Hilltop Circle
Baltimore, MD 21250
https://cadvc.umbc.edu/joseph-beuys-sculpture-park/

The idea being: By involving many community members, ideas will take root, and people will get themselves in motion to plant more trees and improve their communities in other creative and self-determined ways.

In 2002, as part of the Tree Partnership, over 200 trees were planted among Patterson Park, Carroll Park and Wyman Dell Park, all within Baltimore City. Thirty trees and stones were placed at UMBC’s sacred space, and each year the ensuing growth of each tree adds to the significance of the site.

According to the UMBC website: “There is a bench in the middle of the garden area and under this bench lies a small journal to write thoughts in. In its heart the journal has enveloped the joy, sorrows, loves, heartbreaks worries and motivations of numerous UMBC students as they write in it since 2002. The bench and journal are funded by the TKF Foundation whose mission is: “to provide the opportunity for a deeper human experience by supporting the creation of public green spaces that offer temporary place of sanctuary, encourage reflection, provide solace and engender peace.” What a simply marvelous idea. This is the time that we are all growing up. This is the time where we all will need some time to self-explore and think about where life is headed. Nature can be a very powerful thing — a reminder of power and a gentle caress that calms and soothes the heart and mind all at once.”

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Sandra Abbott

Sandra Abbott is the Curator of Collections & Outreach at the Center for Art, Design & Visual Culture, UMBC. Not only is she responsible for overseeing the art within the university gallery, she teaches museum studies and also spearheads service learning with the students in local communities. To add to her creative plate, Sandra also…

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