The Mother Tree Project debuted in February 2010 at the Portland Building installation space. Hundreds of people viewed the project as they passed by it on their way to work; over two hundred sent crocheted roots which attached to the tree; and another hundred crocheters, feminists, fathers, mothers, grandmothers, engineers, children, and artists joined me in the space to crochet roots on site.

I had many wonderful conversations and received several touching notes, such as this one from a young single mother in Australia: “These roots were crocheted whilst watching TV, waiting for the computer to load, eating and breast feeding. I send these to you with love and appreciation for The Mother Tree. It is a beautiful sculpture and I am proud to be a part of it. My roots are made of bamboo, soy and cotton, and the purple ones are dyed using grapes from my backyard.”

An entire 3rd grade class from Cedarwood school came to crochet with me one day, I got to teach the city’s day care children how to finger crochet, and KGW News Channel 8 aired a segment about the project.

Read my daily blog about Mother Tree’s initial installation.

Watch the video/performance by Ian Lucero/Tracy Broyles

Read an article about the project in Crochet Magazine.


Mother Tree is traveling around the world! Here’s where she’s been so far:

March 2014: Pacific University, Forest Grove, OR

August – October 2013: Craft Alliance, Springfield, IL

February/March 2012: Massachussetts College of Liberal Arts

November 2011: University of Illinois, Springfield

Spring 2011: Chehalem Cultural Center, Newberg, OR

February 2011: Cheltenham Center for the Arts, Philadelphia

October 2010: Portland Fashion Week

July/August 2010: ‘about space’, Portland, OR

April 2010: Anka Gallery, Portland, OR

February/March 2010: The Portland Building, Portland, OR

Please contact Helen if you are interested in hosting Mother Tree or have an idea for a venue.