— by Mellany Armstrong

Six London plane trees in Sister Cities Park in Logan Square now wear the colorful handiwork of fiber artist Janell Wysock ’04. The new temporary art display, Color Under the Canopy, debuted Friday, September 11, after a two-day installation. Sister Cities Park is located on the east side of Logan Square, a short walk from Moore’s campus.

Color Under the Canopy was commissioned by the Center City District as part of an effort to instill a sense of optimism during Center City’s recovery efforts, said Paul Levy, president and CEO of the CCD. CCD commissioned artists earlier this year to design and install graphics on boarded storefronts and to create banners that are still on display through the downtown.

“This is a great place for families and children,” Levy said, “and we wanted to send a nice subtle but exciting message that things are coming back, that there’s a sense of hope.”

The tree-sweaters, made from wool in shades of blue, pink, orange and purple, were knitted on a loom in Wysock’s Philadelphia studio in large sections, then paired with each other to create contrast. They are about 12 feet tall and were installed 10 feet off the ground. Wysock said she came up with the name of the installation while working with it in her studio.

“It’s conveying color and it’s conveying it under the canopy of trees in a way that we typically don’t see color,” she said. The wool used in the pieces came from Huntingdon Yarn Mill in Philadelphia.

Amy Genda, senior creative director for CCD, said they were familiar with Wysock’s work because she was a graduate of the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator.

 “We really wanted to bring a point of joy to people as they walk by, an element of surprise, something that you would like up and it would make you smile,” she said.

The eye-catching wraps decorate some of the park’s most precious assets—its trees. The project took five weeks to create and will remain up through the fall.

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