Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Bristlecone Pines, CA by Joan Gentry

  • Title: Bristlecone Pines, CA
  • Artist: Joan Gentry
  • Medium: Gelatin silver print
  • Size: 18"h x 20"w
  • Creation date: 2011
  • Added to collection: 2019
  • Donor: Gift of Joan Gentry and Bill Rhoades
  • Campus: Rock Creek
  • Location: B2/2 Math Division office rm 210H

Bristlecone Pines are arguably the oldest living things on earth; one Bristlecone Pine in California has been verified to be over 5000 years old.  They grow very slowly in rocky landscapes just below the tree line and their distinctive twisted, gnarly forms are the result of years of slowly being shaped by harsh winds.

Here the gesture of the thick, stunted trunk tells the story of survival in brutal conditions through patient gathering of reserves. In this photograph by Joan Gentry the silvery tones of this tree (almost entirely in shadow) look like a meticulous drawing.