The Master Tree: Tree and Rock Series


Inspired by the symbols of Songham Taekwondo and Master Duer’s embodiment of the values of his art, The Master Tree depicts the rock and tree that are the basis of our Master’s heritage in a setting reminiscent of his Willamette Valley. With our rolling hills and ever-present clouds, The Master Tree has grown leaning upward, as if to strive always for improvement toward excellence, but with its branches reaching also back to teach and shelter those who follow on this challenging course. With each branch comes a new level of mastery until the student becomes the fully-realized master of this form of martial arts. In the sky hangs the symbol to which we students owe our first loyalty, our school, and the example we always strive to emulate. Framed in cherry recovered from the packing crates that delivered materials used in the expansion of Master Duer’s school, the wood of this piece represents the virtue that anyone can become a black belt no matter his or her beginnings. Within Duer’s ATA Martial Arts, we are all offered a chance to become more than we were.

Size: 28.5 inches x 33 inches (72 cm x 84 cm)
Materials: Commercial cotton, cotton-polyester thread, Duer’s ATA Martial Arts Patch, Cherry.
Frame by: Patrick Hunter, Cherry
Completed: 2014
Series: Tree and Rock, #1
Current location: Duer’s ATA Martial Arts, NFS

My Thoughts on the Work

The Master Tree was my first truly Art quilt. I had a lot of fun creating it. My plan was to incorporate a lot of symbolism into the work. I aimed for a style that was my own influenced by traditional Korean artwork and my American homeland. When I’d finished it, I know it wouldn’t be my last piece. The Master Tree was the beginning of a Grand Adventure for me, just as it was the beginning of a much Bigger journey for Master Russ Duer of Duer’s ATA Martial Arts, for whom this piece was designed and dedicated.



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