Joel Tauber’s hilarious celebration and defense of greenery, determination and in fact, obsession, was full of opinion and zest… a story with a happy ending on many fronts. The morning after, however, I caught myself leering at the sycamores in front of my house.
— Leah Garchik, San Francisco Chronicle
The film succeeds in raising critical issues about urban environmentalism. And it provides a small but inspiring story of successful environmental activism.
— Andrew Jenks, Educational Media Reviews Online
Few artists in recent memory exploit the potential of obsession as thoroughly, or as winningly, as Joel Tauber…. In the den of distraction that is the Rose Bowl parking lot, his obsession functions as a sort of spotlight, illuminating, through the tree, our dysfunctional relationship with nature. And after a while, his conviction comes to seem rather more sane than blanketing the earth with asphalt.
— Holly Myers, The Los Angeles Times
Backed by scientific research and narrated in a passionate, though often humorous, voice, Tauber’s videos urge viewers to consider the environ-mental toll of urban development and to better care for the natural features that survive within it.
— Sharon Mizota, The Los Angeles Times
Sick Amour manages to be both funny and heartbreaking…. The artist assumes a position somewhere between extreme sportsman, eco-warrior and naturalist monk on a mission to connect the dots of life’s many unanswered Big Questions… Tauber can be as poignantly eccentric as German performance jester John Bock, and as profound as Joseph Beuys.
— Emma Gray, ArtReview Magazine
Joel Tauber represents a new kind of artist. His work encompasses a quest for God, nature and the desperate state of the environment while being outrageously funny, absurd and poignant.
— Emma Gray, ArtNet Magazine
The outright kookiness that Tauber projects into his discussions of Romanticism, Utilitarianism and Environmental Ethics updates Will Rogers’ knack for using homespun humor to draw attention to critical issues. Like successful entertainers everywhere, Tauber has an uncanny sense of timing.
— Diane Calder, ArtScene Magazine
I]t is the steadfast, visionary stewardship of his initially solitary creative engagement with the tree — and the story of how it blossomed and flourished — that gives the project its metaphorical political wallop.
— Doug Harvey, LA WEEKLY
This tree was in the parking lot, surrounded by automobiles, surrounded by asphalt, and you thought it was going to die, and you stepped in… Joel, thank you so much for your efforts.
— Ross Becker, NBC local news
As an artist, Tauber can afford to be exuberant about his attachment to this tree. But in a more subdued way many scientists, economists and environmentalists all echo the same passion. They all say trees are heroes of the urban environment.
— Bill Drummond, SoundPrint, National Public Radio
Joel Tauber is a modern day Don Quixote. But instead of tilting at windmills to win the hand of the fair Dulcinea, this Eagle Rock artist is battling the urban jungle and making a public statement about the condition of our environment and his adoration of a single sycamore tree.
— Erica Blodgett, The Design Magazine
Tauber draws us in, making us empathize with his obsession for his tree.
— Lesley McCave, ArtInfo
I thought it was a neat idea that this one tree could be symbolic of trees in Pasadena and open space.
— Steve Madison, Vice Mayor of Pasadena (Sharon Mizota, The Los Angeles Times)
Tauber’s plan highlights both the plight of parking-lot trees and the need for them. “What he’s doing is something pretty unique … imagination is a wonderful thing, to the extent to which it has a constructive community message.”
— Sid Tyler, Councilmember of Pasadena (Janette Williams, The Pasadena Star News
There’s something to be said for passion and creativity and trying to make a difference.
— Darryl Dunn, General Manager of the Rose Bowl Operating Committee (Erica Blodgett, The Design Magazine)
[I] like the idea that Tauber’s project … addresses the idea of “nature engulfed in a man-made environment.” Not all Rose Bowl visitors are aware of the importance of its site in the Arroyo Seco… “so this is a small way to address that and remind us that we’re borrowing the space.”
— Jonathon Glus, Pasadena’s executive arts director (Janette Williams, The Pasadena Star News)
You think it’s funny and a little nutty, and sweet, but “Sick-Amour” really addresses a much larger issue, in this case, fundamentally, what our relationship to nature is.— Susanne Vielmetter, Director of Susanne Vielmetter LA Projects (Sharon Mizota, The Los Angeles Times)