Replanting the Wishing Tree

The Learning Corridor has a new home for the most extraordinary tree on its campus. Tash Taskale’s The Wishing Tree (2007), a 23-foot tall steel sculpture of an abstract tree, was recently reinstalled on the site of the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy expansion. Part of the Greater Hartford Arts Council’s public art collection, Taskale’s work represents the iconic forms that humans have created throughout history to help bring good fortune and protection. The top of the sculpture also contains a kinetic element that moves with the wind. The Wishing Tree is a part of a group of public art sculptures in Hartford’s Learning Corridor, a campus of public schools ranging from Pre-K through high school.

Before The Wishing Tree was moved, it was necessary to perform a maintenance check to determine the condition of the work. When it comes to real trees, however, the skills of an arborist, like those at, are more likely to be utilized in their maintenance. The Greater Hartford Arts Council is committed to annually checking the nearly 40 works in our public art collection. This way we can identify what works require specific conservation and maintenance actions in order to preserve them for future generations.

A trained public art professional discovered that the moving component of The Wishing Tree was no longer functioning properly and would need to be repaired. It was agreed with our conservator that it would be best to perform the repair once the sculpture was reinstalled, so stay tuned for the next step! Meanwhile, here are some behind the scene photos of The Wishing Tree being replanted on campus. It took a lot of work – with man and machine working together to carefully reinstall the sculpture. An excavator with a variety of excavator attachments was imperative throughout the process of reinstalling it and it was fascinating to watch it work.

Many thanks to Newfield Construction for installing a new base and carefully reinstalling the sculpture. To learn more about the GHAC public art collection, visit our Public Art page.

Wishing Tree Reinstall 1
The Wishing Tree is maneuvered into position
Wishing Tree Reinstall 2
Excavator operator turns the Wishing Tree upright before placing it on its new base
Wishing Tree Reinstall 3
The Wishing Tree in its new home alongside Montessori Magnet School

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