Sophora Sophia

Alix Stadtbäumer


öffentlich zugänglich

Giesinger Bahnhofsplatz, 81539 München

Aluminiumguss, hellgrün pulverbeschichtet

Architecture: Vogt Landschaftsplaner

Photos: Christoph Mukherjee

Text: Heinz Schütz

The newly designed area in front of the Giesinger commuter rail station contains a transport hub with bus stops and a plaza in front of the cultural center, where a farmers’ market is held weekly. Sophora Sophia, a luminous green fruit sculpture, is set up like a symbol on the outer edge of the market-culture plaza. The quasi-architectural structure, resembling a small pavilion, also relates to its immediate surroundings, forming a replica of the fruit of Sophora japonica (commonly known as the Chinese scholar tree or the Japanese pagoda tree), enlarged to over three meters. This species of tree is planted on site and will later form a canopy of leaves above the artwork.

Individually visible seeds ensconced in a long pod make up the aesthetic fascination of the scholar tree’s fruit. The sculpture draws attention to this bizarre creation of nature, while at the same time, its size, material, and color emphasize its own artificiality. In this, Sophora Sophia resembles other works by the artist that also underscore the contrast between art and nature. What can be understood as a reference to the increasing encroachment of artificiality also simultaneously functions as an unfamiliar sight that makes the natural more clearly visible.

Sophora Sophia sensitizes our perception of the trees that are a crucial component of the plaza’s design. In this spirit, the plaza’s neighbors are also involved. Plans and brief descriptions displayed in surrounding businesses point out the more than ten different species of trees occupying the plaza.

Sophora Sophia
Sophora Sophia