Inspired by South Fulton Library’s identity as a 'Treasure Among the Trees,' Robert Witherspoon's Tree of Life is a two-part project for the interior and exterior of the library.
The stainless steel sculpture contains multi-colored polychromate “leaves” are engraved with Adinkra (West African) symbols for knowledge, community, truth, and learning. The concrete base is inset with a stainless steel mandala and was designed at a height to allow seating. The sculpture is intended to be a colorful and beckoning presence at the entrance of the library.
Witherspoon extended the project into the interior of the library by collaborating with photographer/naturalists Kathryn Kolb and Jessica Muhammad of EcoAddendum to create a community-based photography project exploring the natural landscape in South Fulton entitled Pathway to Awe. More than 50 community members of all ages and backgrounds participated in nature hikes/photography workshops that traversed Herbert Greene Nature Preserve & Utoy Creek, Cascade Springs Nature Preserve, and Cochran Mill Nature Preserve during the summer of 2016. These participants produced over 1,000 digital photographs of trees, plants, wildlife, and landscapes. From these, the artists carefully chose twenty-four images by fourteen participants – their final selections based on artistic merit and a desire to include a variety of perspectives on south Fulton County’s beautiful natural features.