An artist-in-residence has blown into Wellesley and is hard at work on Overbrook Drive as he turns a tree removal project into a creative sculpture that is stopping traffic in that area. Wielding mostly a chainsaw, sometimes a blowtorch, woodcarver Michael Legassey’s job is to carve custom pieces for clients. The talented artist makes anything from hummingbirds to 10-foot bears and says on his Facebook page, “We can pretty much do anything you could think up!”
On Overbrook Drive, what his clients have thought up is a 10-point stag atop an 8-foot tall tree stump. The deer stands proud and strong, gazing off into the distance at the home across the street. The stump was once itself part of a mighty being in its own right, one that has been felled and shall rise no more. Yet in a way the sculptor’s medium lives on, shapeshifting into something that can no longer provide shade, but can still provide a presence. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein comes to mind.
Wood Wizard Carvings out of Athol, Massachusetts was started 26 years ago by Legassey’s father. If you’ve got a wood carving challenge, he’s up for it You can reach Legassey at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to sharp-eyed reader PM for the heads-up on this story.
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There could have been more tree art in town
Maybe you know of other such woodworking in town, and if so, let us know: email@example.com But here’s something you might be surprised to learn. Back in 2014 there was talk of creating art — “a whimsical seat in each trunk,” according to the Natural Resources Commission meeting minutes — from 2 10-foot Silver Maple stumps on either side of the Brook Path. But that never materialized, with one neighbor reporting “there is no groundswell of support for the tree stump art.”