The Blued Trees Symphony
In November 2015, Spectra Energy Corporation destroyed the Blued Trees Overture. It had been installed on private property within the corridor for the expansion of the Algonquin Incremental Market Pipeline (AIM).
In the spring of 2016, the entire sum of the Ethelwyn Doolittle Justice and Outreach Fund awarded to the Blued Trees Symphony was invested in creating a legal framework to defend Blued Trees against eminent domain takings by gas pipeline companies.
Blued Trees stands with all activists contesting the taking of land, water and vital resources by corporations seeking to install fossil fuel pipelines, at the moment particularly those opposing the AIM Pipeline with the Blued Trees launch site in Peekskill, New York, USA.
On November 3rd, 2016, at George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, at the invitation of Changwoo Ahn, director, EcoScience+Art, the Blued Trees Symphony project's formal and legal strategies to combat gas pipeline corporations that contribute to climate disruption will be presented in a special talk with musical excerpts based on the transposition of painted tree-notes.
Read Aviva Rahmani's essay The Spirit of Change: Water, Policy, and Ecological Artmaking here
On November 11 at The Perspective Gallery at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia, curated by Robin Boucher and starting on the United States presidential election day, installation, performance, and talk events will contribute towards establishing standing for the whole symphony. This location has had many Blued Trees installed to contest pipelines. The Coda events will give the local community legal instruments to contest eminent domain takings by natural gas corporations.
The Blued Trees Symphony was presented in a panel titled Home / Not Home: Centering American Studies Where We Are at the American Studies Association (ASA) Conference in Denver, Colorado, November 17—20, 2016.
During 2016—2017 at the Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology (KRICT) Art Gallery, Daejeon, South Korea, curated by Yu Hyun-Ju at the opening of this first art gallery for KRICT, workshops and installations about installing the Blued Trees Symphony demonstrated that it applies throughout the world, including in Korea's Carbon Art Project.
"In February 2015, I connected with a small group of anti-fracking activists opposing fossil fuel infrastructures causing global warming to explore whether we could leverage copyright law to prevent natural gas pipeline expansions. I created Blued Trees, a symphonic installation, and launched the overture in the path of the Algonquin pipeline. That expanded pipeline would pass 105 feet from the Indian Point nuclear facility in Peekskill, New York, which is thirty miles from New York City. The work is at the invitation and permission of landowners facing property condemnation by eminent domain under the legal rubric of “public good.” Each musical measure of the symphony is 1/3 linear mile, and one tree is one note, marked as sine waves on the trees. The overture measure was iterated in twelve international sites. The paint is a non-toxic casein slurry of ultramarine blue and buttermilk to encourage moss growth. October 4, 2015, was the first movement, following the overture, of what has become a full symphony of events in multiple sites; it took place in Utica, New York, in the path of another pipeline. There will be five movements. The legal defense process is underway. What follows are excerpts from my social media journaling." - Aviva Rahmani