Sunday, February 25, 2007

The END of the Labyrinth

The END of the Labyrinth? PLEASE READ.

Check out http://www.myspace.com/burnetwoodslabyrinth

Go see the Labyrinth before it's gone. It sounds like it's being torn down. Although you can't walk it anymore, you can still see it from the fence. See Karen's Stuntmom article posted 9/28/06- A Sense of Wonder in the Woods for more information and a comment from the builder of the Labyrinth.

3 comments:

Karen said...

Actually, at this point I can see why the park has a problem with the labyrinth. At the "myspace" link you provided, the author says that the labyrinth's last lesson to us might be impermanence. I think its last lesson might be "don't get too big for your britches." What started as a magical space, nested quietly in the surrounding woods seemed to be taking over its space. A newer addition that the labyrinth founder described to me as "fairy webbing" (or something like that) appeared to have been made of fresh-cut branches. Now that doesn't sound good for the woods, does it? Isn't the rule, "take only pictures and leave only footprints"? Moving some rocks and sticks around is one thing, but becoming Johnny woodcutter in a city park is another thing. Also, a lot of the "gifts" to the labyrinth were not nature-made items, but rather things that some might even identify as "trash." So, I can't say that I mourn its passing now, though I did find a sense of wonder there once. If I were to have another chat with the labyrinth founder, I might quote a bumper sticker that was for sale at a buddhist retreat space: "Don't always believe what you think." And I'd have to add, "Thanks for the memories -- the labyrinth was a beautiful place and a beautiful idea in a marginal, inner-city park."

Chris Matthews said...

Just a note of polite correction. All of the cut branches and logs were from the regular tending of the park employees. They go through and saw apart dead limbs and cut down overgrown areas, like the honeysuckle growth. We just took their cuttings from around the Labyrinth and wove them together to make the outer fence. We tried to do as little damage to the land as possible, avoiding plant beds and winding around trees. That's why the space has such a funny shape.

CLM said...

During the spring and summer, the space is hidden but the front door is obvious. When the leaves fell, everything looked the same, no one could tell where the Labyrinth began and started to enter all over the place, trampling over beds, saplings, and branches. That had to end.

During one of the wind storms, some huge branches fell on the outer edges of the Labyrinth. One of the walkers commented that his grandmother used to call such natural fences "fairy fortifications", because Mother Nature had created them. The name stuck.

So, we extended the fence around the edge with found materials so people could easily find the front door. Also, there had been some vandalism of the sculptures and people are less comfortable damaging something if they feel they are passing into a formal space.