APPLE ORCHARDS, in addition to producing beautiful fruit, are natural sculpture parks. Walking among the vigorous and prolific trees, their gnarled, twisting trunks and branches contrasting with the orchard’s orderly grid, is a sensory treat — especially at this time of year, when fall foliage is at or near its peak.
The apples’ dazzling array of colors, sizes, and shapes are also sculpture-like, objects of singular beauty as well as a delicious and nourishing food.
Complementing these natural features, Park Hill Orchard in Easthampton, Massachusetts, adds a distinctly human touch. “Art in the Orchard” is a walking sculpture trail that winds through Park Hill’s fields and gardens. The self-guided trail is about a half-mile long; a walk through the labyrinth near the end adds about a quarter mile.
This year’s juried exhibition is the fourth biennial and features all new works by sculptors. Each piece has a plaque with a description of the work and biography of the artist. “Art in the Orchard” is open all day, every day, until Thanksgiving.
Here is a sampling of this year’s sculptures.
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ON A SMALLER SCALE, other orchards have added sculptural elements. Here are two recent examples.