‘Symmetree’ — Art installation serves as bench in Vail | VailDaily.com

‘Symmetree’ — Art installation serves as bench in Vail

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VAIL — Ben Roth is the artist of the acclaimed beetle-killed lodgepole pine installation "Singing Trees" in Ford Park in 2010. Roth returned to Vail in June to create another temporary environmental art installation — "Symmetree."

Using six felled diseased spruce trees effected by pine needle scale and spruce beetle, the artist along with Sam Macke and Timo Macke, constructed the interactive installation that serves as a bench on West Meadow Drive in Vail, east of the library.

'What is art'

"Installation art allows for more experimentation than permanent public art. The materials don't have to last forever, so there are more mediums to explore," Roth said. "It also allows the community to take more chances with subject matter because the work isn't permanent. I'm always thinking about the life cycle of my sculpture materials and gravitate toward those materials that leave a small carbon footprint and do no harm."

A native of Colorado, Roth currently resides in Jackson, Wyoming. His wire elk mount sculpture "Wapiti" is in the town's permanent public art collection and can be seen in the Lionshead Village Welcome Center.

"Working with non-traditional materials challenges the creative process and opens up peoples minds to the question of 'what is art?" Roth said.

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