Man says tree stunt that blocked traffic was performance art

In this Monday, Oct. 24, 2016 photo Asher Woodworth, center left, is dressed as a tree while standing with law enforcement officials near an intersection in Portland, Maine. Woodworth, who was arrested for blocking traffic while dressed as an evergreen tree, says the public display was intended to be performance art. He was released on $60 bail. (Ted Varipatis, WCSH-TV via AP)
In this Monday, Oct. 24, 2016 photo Asher Woodworth, center left, is dressed as a tree while standing with law enforcement officials near an intersection in Portland, Maine. Woodworth, who was arrested for blocking traffic while dressed as an evergreen tree, says the public display was intended to be performance art. He was released on $60 bail. (Ted Varipatis, WCSH-TV via AP)

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A man arrested for blocking traffic in Maine while dressed as an evergreen tree says the public display was intended to be performance art.

Asher Woodworth tells the Portland Press Herald his embodiment of a tree inching across a busy downtown Portland intersection was designed to reflect a contrast in the “energies of economy and efficiency and the energies of slowness and magic.”

The 30-year-old apparently moved too slowly across the street on Monday. He was arrested for obstructing traffic when he failed to heed a warning by police officers. He was released on $60 bail.

Friend Hamilton Poe knew Woodworth at Bennington College in Vermont and says Woodworth can sometimes “get into trouble in funny ways but never in malicious ways.”

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