A day after visiting the winery with the sculpture gardens (in yesterday’s post) we went to visit a friend who was beginning a small gardening business. tomatoes are his dream crop. Standing in the newly raked rows I thought about how this space will soon be filled with these rough bamboo stakes which will, in their way, create a space and impression not too dissimilar from the work of art in the last post. Except that this is functional and made without esthetic concerns, although, as can be seen by the sense of order visible in these first 3 rows, there is a pure and practical, and even beautiful esthetic underlying his system.
What came to me while standing there was that this ‘installation’ would ultimately be be the more impressive one once it was fully staked, and then, during each stage of the season, it would be transformed by nature and time, and that in the long run it was this place that might be the real work of art.
I know it could easily be said that this is a garden not an art work, but who is to say what kind of effort brings us closer to the spirit and intention of the maker. I would like to stand here at summer’s end, with a sun warmed and ripened fruit in my hand, and take in the thousand bright red spheres shimmering against their sun burnished leaves, and breathe in that particular fragrance that tomatoes in the field give off, and then ask myself which experience pleased me more.