The Black Cherry (prunus serotina) is a robust tree, native to the forests of North America. It supports diverse populations of insects, birds, and mammals. This installation, titled Black Cherry, is designed to recall that natural arboreal habitat, using cut sections of a felled Black Cherry tree arranged across the gallery floor, each sprouting a graceful metal rod supporting a transparent IV bag. The juxtaposition of the natural and the man-made creates a jarring image of a forest in distress.
Black Cherry is based on carefully researched data from the United States censuses and each element has both a metaphorical and a quantitative meaning. The installation creates a parallel between the forest and the immigration process, showing that diversity is also an important engine to keep both people and place alive. Together, the elements of the installation serve as a metaphor for the importance of living in the midst of diversity; a forest survives because of each individual organism inside it, and much like a community, flourishes when the diverse inhabitants can work together in a network of support.