Crown of Broken Branches is a watercolor painting by Suze Woolf

Painting Details

Watercolor on 555 lb Arches archival paper, burned edges sealed with varnish
51 x ~36

The last of the burnscape paintings that I worked on during my residency at the Banff Centre. This burned, downed tree was in the Sawback Prescribed Burn west of Banff off the Bow Valley Parkway. I painted it on a purposefully imperfect rectangle, to emphasize the capriciousness of fire as a shaper, as well as the restless energy with which I attacked the task.

Juror Rock Hushka of the Tacoma Art Museum gave this a Merit Award at Art Port Townsend's Expression Northwest competition.

As the climate warms, forest fires are becoming more frequent and catastrophic in the western United States. My deep anxiety with the impacts of climate change on wilderness are emerging in this series. Burned-over areas of forest are riveting. Unfamiliar tree forms are newly exposed. Formerly hidden terrain features become visible. Normal greens, blues and browns are transformed. All the worst fires of the last fifty years have occured in the last five years.

Please contact me if you are interested in learning more about any of my images. All represent original paintings, not reproductions. I have many more paintings than are shown on this site. And, since I frequently work in series, there may be additional views of the subjects shown here.