Heaven & Earth III

CoCA's third Carkeek Park exhibit, subtitled "Cycles of Return," scatters nearly two dozen sculptural installations among the greenery. Twenty-one local artists are represented at numbered stations you can find on a roughly two-mile loop. (Download the map first; and/or use your smartphone to read the QR codes at each installation.) How does the art respond to the environment? That's the question as you descend the Piper's Creek Trail through the remnants of an old orchard. There, Chris Papa's Graft appends a series of boxes onto an old stump. The resulting arch is a hybrid of the hewn and the natural, a reminder of how fruit trees themselves have been heavily engineered over the millennia (long before gene splicing or big agribusiness). Other pieces get lost in the woods, like a tree wrapped in twigs, or are almost indistinguishable from trail-maintenance work. Perhaps the best piece in the show was Brian Gerich's Consistency, a large cedar orb suspended in a grove of cedar trees. (Unfortunately, the piece was removed and destroyed by overzealous park workers.) It was like an oversized Noguchi lamp lit by the sun. The slats, held together by zip ties, cast fascinating shadows on the ground; and the pendant sphere smelled good, too. There's also an annex at Point Shilshole Beach, a few miles south at 6413 Seaview Ave. N.W. Go at low tide, since some pieces are otherwise submerged. BRIAN MILLER

July 9-Oct. 9, 6 a.m.-10 p.m., 2011

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