Sara Favriau



Cairn ou le Cercle vertueux is an installation of sculpted Aleppo pine logs. Here, these trees have been taken from the forest of Font-Blanche and brought within a park and an architecture, that
of the dovecote at the villa Noailles. These trees compose and traverse the space of the dovecote and its scenography. The work Cairn ou le Cercle vertueux evokes two forms of architectures :
one is primary, nature, and the other is symbolic, a temple. By acting upon the morphology of a tree, by sculpting it, nature has been transposed into a monument : the trunk becomes the bole of a column or a pillar. Through this sculpture the tree becomes a hybrid, taking on a chimeric appearance. The work thus evokes and questions our relationship with fascination, and through this our relationship with nature. A fascination which is torn, caused by the pain brought about by the artist’s intervention upon the living material, confronted with the grace of three trees which have invited themselves within an institution.

The logs are not the product of being felled. Instead, they will be trees that have perished, through a “natural” death, and selected from the forest of Font-Blanche in collaboration with biological researchers from INRAE Avignon. Their decline is the unfortunate story of climate change and forest drogues. Aleppo pine is a species that is native to the Mediterranean region. These trees are markers for the stakes at play in the INRAE’s research. Indeed, the URFM is working upon the response of these trees to abiotic constraints. This research allows them to understand the factors of resistance and resilience behind these forests, in order to anticipate and develop the future. The installation, beyond its environmental and poetic status is a dual reflection upon a stance, investment, and experience, starting with the idea of a nature with which one cohabits, to reconstruct a biocenosis, in order to understand, discern, and test its limits... Finally, quite simply, to render the forest visible.

Photography : Luc Bertrand

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