Chalking the outlines of dead trees

Chalk Outline Tree
Armando Fontes (graffiti) and Catia Rissi (photographer)

Armondo Fontes and Catia Rissi call their chalk outlines of cut urban trees a "collective denunciation as an environmental graffiti." Fontes, who lives in the city of Belo Horizonte in southeastern Brazil, saw that trees were being cut and the city was not replacing them. He decided to engage in a guerilla art protest:

With the stumps that remain after cutting the trees, Fontes draws what would have been the shadow of the tree that once existed there. "I thought to refer to the universe of the cartoon. The silhouette made ââwith chalk also recalls the demarcation made ââat crime scenes. It is ephemeral, since the chalk quickly dies out, but everything is recorded in the picture," says Fontes. (source)


The medium of fat sidewalk chalk readily lends itself to the hyperstylized, cloudlike outlines of trees, which look a lot like kids randomly doodled them. For me, the lightheartedness of that first impression doesn't dispel easily, so it's hard to take the outlines as the vehement indictment I think they're intended to be. But it's still a provocative project.

Via Environmental Graffiti

More like this

Greta and I did our undergraduate studies at the University of Chicago, or as a commonly-sold T-shirt on campus put it, "where fun goes to die." To say that Chicago didn't emphasize academics over a social life is to deny that people literally lived in the library (a full-scale campsite was found…
I always get plenty of books for Christmas--more than I’ll ever have time to read, certainly. So, this year, when I started to tear the paper from the corner of another heavy and flat rectangle, it was hard to get excited. But underneath the paper, I caught a glimpse of a cracked cobblestone. The…
My adventures in NY, continued: Sunday Morning I say the last of my farewells, and lament that I can’t see all my sciblings again before I leave. With plenty of time before my flight, I decide to go wander around New York a little bit. It turns out to be a natural choice... it almost feels as if I…
A few weeks ago, I headed up into the mountains to find aspen trees and branches for inspiration. I took Magnolia Drive, which rises out of Boulder Canyon and straddles a high ridge before opening out onto the Peak-to-Peak highway running along the continental divide, near Coal Creek Canyon. (The…