Monday, 13 December 2010
I always find that most outdoor large Christmas trees these days tend to look a little forlorn: the barriers which surround them (health and safety reasons? to prevent vandalism? potential opportunity for sponsors advertisements) don't really help and in daylight the strings of lights look like they're trying to tie the tree down rather than looking their magical best as they usually do when it gets dark.
This year, Chippenham's tree in the centre of town has been criticised as looking 'scrawny'. I thought it didn't look that much different to previous years, though admittedly there is something a bit strange going on to the right. As usual it's been decorated with ornaments made by local schoolchildren. I wonder if this is part of the scrawny problem? The tree's quite large, so the decorations look a bit 'lost' as it would have taken the children a lot longer to make sufficient decorations to really fill the tree. Perhaps we need a smaller tree with the same amount of decoration and then it might look more sumptuous?
Elsewhere, this year's tree at the Tate Britain in London has caused quite a stir because the artist responsible for it has chosen to install an unadorned tree. According to the BBC, Georgio Sardotti is noted for art which 'celebrates the power of nothing'.
I can see where he's coming from: perhaps we should appreciate the tree for what it is, rather than having to decorate it. His thoughts chime with my suggestion about us having living, 'celebration trees' when I wrote about Poole's festive tree controversy last year. I was also amused to read he used to decorate Christmas trees for a living, so perhaps he has a stronger reaction against all of that than most of us.
In contrast Claridge's have revealed their designer tree for this year and the one on display at Jenner's department store in Edinburgh is marvellous - they needed to remove the revolving doors in order to get it into the building. Meanwhile The Daily Mail criticises the Obamas for having a tree which took over four days to decorate during an economic crisis.
Perhaps my favourite finding this year was The Telegraph's video report on the world's tallest tree in Gubbio, Italy. However, whilst it is indeed a magnificent specimen, I think their report might be a tad exaggerated: 2,600 feet seems a bit of a tall story?
What's your neighbourhood tree like this year? Real or artificial? In situ or shipped in? Decorated or unadorned? Do post a picture and show us via Mr Linky on December's OOTS kick-off post.