Timm Ulrichs

Tanzende Bäume, 1997/2010 [Dancing Trees]

Trees are generally seen as symbols of rootedness, natural growth or age. In this work, the movement of the birch trees challenges this preconceived view with a subtle irony. Ulrichs involves the viewer in the sculpture through their approach to the trees, which is what serves to trigger the rotations. The supposed rootedness of the viewer in front of works of art or interesting phenomena, similar to that of trees, is exposed as a construct and ironically turned upside down.


Apart from presenting a striking symbol of the dialogue between nature and art, Timm Ulrich’s Tanzende Bäume also represent the archetype of the tree, standing for rootedness, natural growth or age, which is subtly and ironically relieved of the usual way it is viewed. 

In this, Ulrich’s intended connection between art and nature, visitors are also integrated as bemused observers and, at the same time, as agents who trigger the dance of the birch trees through their approach and become both integrated and involved. They are no longer devoted, passive observers romanticising over nature but rather their would-be rootedness, like that presumed to apply to trees as a law of nature, is exposed as a construct and unhinged with irony.

Author: Elisabeth Fiedler
Plan & Overview: Position 63
Owner: [Land Steiermark]
Biography: Timm Ulrichs  

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