Simple Pleasures 2001 Bowdoin college Museum of Art, Brunswick, ME. Photo: Bowdoin College

After more than three years of planning and preparation, internationally acclaimed artist Patrick Dougherty will visit Wichita, Kansas to begin his historic, site-specific public art installation at Mark Arts, a nonprofit art center dedicated to providing opportunities to appreciate and create art in the atmosphere of lifelong learning. The distinguished artist, whose work has been exhibited around the world, as well as at major galleries and museums, recently selected Mark Arts for his next art installation and needs over 100 community volunteers to support with various roles and responsibilities including harvesting saplings, leaf stripping, sculpture construction, and maintenance from May 2 – 20, 2022.

Call for Volunteers

The volunteer component of a Dougherty installation is significant. Mark Arts welcomes partnership with professional associations, area university art programs, and interested volunteers who will support the artist in constructing his site-specific installation.

During local harvest, volunteers will cut, bundle, and gather saplings for transport. During construction, volunteers will weave saplings under the artist’s direction, fetching bundles of sticks, and support maintenance of the large-scale, site-specific installation.

Dougherty will begin building his immense environmental sculpture by weaving, twisting, and turning tree saplings into large-scale whimsical, whirling shapes, with help from staff and volunteers, starting May 2.


No specific skills are needed other than enthusiasm, physical stamina, and the ability to follow directions. By physical stamina, we mean the ability to work for four hours at a time, to be able to reach above one’s head to work, the ability to bend, kneel, and to sit on the ground, normal strength to carry bundles of sticks.  Some volunteers will need to be comfortable working on scaffold; that is, not afraid of heights. Responsible and dedicated volunteers aged 16 and up are welcome to participate.

Get Involved

Interested volunteers should email program director, Chloe Lang, at Please include your name, your organizations name if applicable, mailing address, and phone number.


March 15  – Volunteer interest deadline
March 22  – Volunteer confirmation notification with schedule
May 2-5  – Local harvest of material
May 5-20   – Stickwork construction
May 20  – Opening reception and volunteer party

Sortie De Cave / Free at Last 2008. Jardin, Chateaubourg, France Phot: Charles Crie

About the Artist

Patrick Dougherty was selected for his artistic vision and long track record of successful large-scale, community building sculpture projects. Dougherty earned a B.A. in English from the University of North Carolina in 1967 and an M.A. in Hospital and Health Administration from the University of Iowa in 1969. Later, he returned to the University of North Carolina to study art history and sculpture. Combining his carpentry skills and his love of nature, Patrick began to learn more about primitive techniques of building and to experiment with tree saplings as construction material. In 1982 his first work, Maple body Wrap, was included in the North Carolina Biennial Artists’ Exhibition, sponsored by the North Carolina Museum of Art. Over the last thirty-some years, he has built more than 300 monumental-scale works around the world.

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