Yorkshire Road E14 (Planted 1998, Destroyed 2000), 2009

Keith Coventry’s cast of a broken tree trunk found in an East London housing estate both elevates and memorialises the everyday. The tree was planted as part of a wider scheme to improve the area, to break up the homogeneity of the urban environment. As indicated by the title and the plaque at the base of the tree, Coventry’s sculpture commemorates the moment when the sapling was struck by vandals, its trunk and support having snapped at a point beyond which regeneration is impossible. The material and form of the sculpture recall the modernist sculptures of Constantin Brancusi and earthworks of the 1960s which intervened directly into the environment.