Paul Flickinger (MFA ’97)
1997; Red Pine; Installation
Gone; Formerly on a knoll overlooking northwest curve of Bonisteel Boulevard, North Campus
This 40′ x 8′ piece by then-graduate student Paul Flickinger was meant to be a temporary one-year installation, but it proved so hearty and was enjoyed so much that it was allowed to remain for several years, as the public watched nature take its course. Bundle was built of 120 “culls” of red pine trunks from a clear-cutting of 1996. Flickinger tries to work with what most people would consider to be ‘waste products.’ In the case of Bundle, the small skinny trees he culled from a plantation marked for harvesting would have been run over by heavy equipment, as larger trees were taken for lumber… The driving force behind Flickinger’s work is a sense of the prime. He sees history as a series of actions and reactions; reactions propel one into new areas. Flickinger is reacting against the intellectualization of art and seeks to combine both the intellectual and tactile qualities to create visual richness in his work. Thus, he looks more toward spiritual evolution and provides a missing link for those who need something more tactile. After nearly six years, Bundle deteriorated to a point where it had to be removed, which was done in May 2003.