A memorial for the Tree

I’m filled with so many emotions, as I continue to grapple with the horror of the City chopping the Tree down. I first encountered the Tree in the middle of Rose Bowl Parking Lot K in Pasadena in 2005, and I will never forget it. I will always love it. It will always be a part of my family. Many thanks to all the Tree Baby parents and to everyone who helps keep the Tree’s memory alive! And many thanks to everyone who participates in the public memorial of the Tree by bringing a rock and placing it around where the Tree once lived.

A memorial honoring the Tree that Joel Tauber adopted in 2005. The Tree lived in the middle of a giant parking lot in front of the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, California, USA until the City chopped down the Tree in 2019.

Sick-Amour movie, German Tree Baby & A Photo of The Tree in exhibition “la > x” in Berlin

There’s certainly a lot of things to worry about right now. Increased hate speech and hate crimes; fascist, racist rallies; a terrifying US president and cabinet; deportations; global warming; hurricanes… Yet, somehow I retain hope. I’m encouraged by the resistance here and I’m buoyed when I hear about how many of the Tree Babies are thriving. When I started taking care of The Tree in the middle of the parking lot, I never thought that The Tree would have so many offspring and that so many people and institutions would be kind enough to adopt them. Not all of the Tree Babies are still with us, but many are and many of them are thriving. One of them lives in Germany, far apart from its many siblings in Southern California. Smaller than its siblings, it must still be quite happy; as it has been cared for wonderfully by the Haubrok Foundation. This small German Tree Baby can be seen in front of Stephan Adamski’s new gallery space in Berlin as part of an impressive exhibition, organized by film curator Marc Glöde and collector Axel Haubrok with Black Flamingo Projects, called “la > x” – which focuses on artistic viewpoints from LA. The show includes the movie version of Sick-Amour as well as a large photo of The Tree. The opening is tonight (September 12) from 7 – 9 pm at FAHRBEREITSCHAFT (herzbergstraße 40-43, 10365 Berlin). The exhibition, which features works by my former teachers Stephen Prina and Christopher Williams as well as Margaret Honda, will run from September 15 to December 2. The show is open on Saturdays after 3 pm (pre-registration necessary; visit@haubrok.org). It’s also open on september 15 from 7 – 9 pm and on september 16 and 17 from 12 – 6 pm for Berlin Art Week.