He Carefully Removes Age Rings From Trees To Show The Hidden Life Within

June 13, 2016

In a series called The Hidden Life Within, Italian artist Giuseppe Penone carefully carves out the age rings in trees, basically leaving the sapling behind.

carving tree rings out leaving sapling
Photo: Giuseppe Penone

What's left is called heartwood. The rings are the xylem and phloem of the tree, transporting nutrients and water. Heartwood is pretty much dead and no longer has a function.

carving tree rings out leaving sapling
Photo: Giuseppe Penone

The sculpture actually transcends a material work and represents time itself. With a large block of wood, he carved away the years to a point in time in which the wood was younger. In this way, the work transcends the present and shows us temporality itself.

carving tree rings out leaving sapling
Photo: Giuseppe Penone

"My artwork shows, with the language of sculpture, the essence of matter and tries to reveal with the work, the hidden life within."

carving tree rings out leaving sapling
Photo: Giuseppe Penone

The Hidden Life Within has been displayed in art galleries all over the world.

carving tree rings out leaving sapling
Photo: Giuseppe Penone

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