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How Lovely Are Thy Branches labyrinth in Madison, WI


A sneak peek of the labyrinth set up | Photo by 608today team

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Question: What did the City of Madison do with all its Christmas trees?

Answer: We turned them into a public art exhibit + labyrinth.

What is a labyrinth?

Traditionally, a labyrinth is a meandering path with a singular path that leads to the center. They’re used to invoke creativity, spiritual transformation, and can be used as a walking meditation. While similar to a maze, a labyrinth has one singular path to the center whereas a maze uses multiple paths and directions to challenge the navigator.

How Lovely Are Thy Branches was made with holiday tree branches donated from local Madisonians. Throughout the month of January, local volunteers have helped construct the labyrinth.

Who’s the artist?

The labyrinth is the brainchild of Madison resident Lillian Sizemore. With a background in collage, watercolor, and mixed-media mosaic, her piece invites viewers to observe and reflect.

The entrance is oriented to the winter sunset so that visitors can see the “expanse of the landscape, lake, and the city view as they walk.”

How can I participate?

The 89 ft diameter labyrinth officially opens on Sun., Jan. 30 + will be open the whole month of February, weather dependent. The exhibit is free + open to the public thanks to funding from the Madison Arts Commission.

For the grand opening, the celebration will begin at 3 p.m. with chili + warm drinks from Taco Local’s food truck. Stick around for artist remarks at 4:15 p.m., followed by a glowing hoop procession by Hoop Elation.

Those participating are invited to bring a light to participate + walk the labyrinth at sunset — 5:07 p.m. As you walk the exhibition, release, receive, and return to quiet your mind. Visitors are also welcome to bring a small, natural offering for The Moss Mound at the center.