A Portland man has spoken out about his reasons for dressing as a tree and blocking traffic in a busy intersection, calling it performance art.

Asher Woodworth, age 30, talked with many media outlets this week, including the Portland Press Herald, telling them that the idea for his journey as a tree came to him when he was in a meditative state. Woodworth says he values slowness and quiet in his life, and wanted to see how that philosphy would impact the urgency of traffic.

Police were called to the intersection of Congress and High Streets on Monday, answering a report of someone covered in evergreen boughs that was walking very, very slowly across the road and blocking traffic. Officers tried to get Woodworth to speed up and get of the road but, when he just continued at the same pace, they charged him with Obstructing a Public Way.

Woodworth says he never intended to get arrested or to create a spectacle. He just wanted to address the question, 'Why can't you walk slowly in front of a car?'