David Nash @ Art Basel Unlimited
19 June 2014
David Nash's Cork Spire 2012 (cork oak, 520 x 380 cm diameter) is at Art Unlimited Hall 1.0 Stand U34.
The cork oak for Cork Spire was sourced by David Nash during a trip to Portugal in 2010, staying in a cottage on a cork farm during the harvest period, where he gained insight into the entire process.
Harvesting cork is skilled work. The outer bark is prised off the tree’s trunk and major branches using a careful technique that ensures the living layer of tissue beneath is not damaged. This stripping is done by hand, using specialised axes. Harvesting can only take place at specific points in time, when the bark comes away from the trunk easily. Once collection is complete the bark is piled into big stacks and left to season for at least six months, until its moisture levels have stabilised.
The Cork Spire was first constructed at Kew Gardens especially for the Nash Conservatory in 2012. The material illustrates David Nash's philosophy about our relationship with the natural world. He describes our environment as 'our outer skin'. 'We are in and of the environment and everything that we do impacts upon it, for better or for worse,'.