Magnolias for Pittsburgh


It's mid-January, but Chicago sculptor Tony Tasset's Magnolias for Pittsburgh still blooms. The first time I saw these scuplted trees, I reached up to touch a blossom before fully believing they were not real. The trees are located in the Seventh Street and Penn Avenue Parklet, a space the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust uses to exhibit rotating art pieces. Each tree is cast in bronze from one hand-sculpted replica, and has 800 blossoms painted with enamel.

Surrounded by five real magnolia trees, the sculptures blend in during the Spring. Today, on this grey winter day in Downtown Pittsburgh, with snow still lingering on the ground, they stand out as a bit of magic.