Flower power on display
May 8, 2009
Flowers wait for no man, but for moms? That’s a different story.
Whether kids chose classic spring blooms tulips, hydrangeas, roses or something more exotic, like cymbidium orchids, flowers remains a Mother’s Day mainstay.
Three Park City florists will celebrate the holiday in style, albeit a week late, with Art in Bloom, an exhibition at the Utah Museum of Fine About 30 artists will pair interpretive arrangements with pieces from the gallery’s collection. They will use flowers, greenery, custom-made containers, and their own artistic vision to recreate the original artwork. The exhibition will be open to the public Saturday, May 16 and Sunday, May 17. Admission is $10 for adults and proceeds fund the museum’s education programs.
Jane Sahagian, who owns Rikka Floral Arrangements and Events Center, chose a 19th-century Buddha sculpture from Thailand to inspire her floral design. She plans to use tall savanna grasses and hang flowers from fine copper wire. In the delicate relationship between art and flowers, less is more, both with scent and aesthetics. But art with flowers takes time. Sahagian estimated that the project will take her about 20 hours. "I’m still working on my vision for it," she said.
Karen Buresh of Chesa Verde Florals and Events chose to reinvent a Tatanua helmet mask from the Pacific Island Galleries. The helmet, from New Guinea, is fierce and tribal, made to memorialize the death of a prestigious person. To a lay person, the mask appears difficult to represent with flora, even in an abstract way. Buresh will plug mosses, bark, lichen and feathers into a sphere of foam to recreate its shape and the shades of brown, orange and yellow dashed across the artwork. The arrangement will sit atop a wicker stand. "It sang to me when I went through the museum," Buresh said. Trained in Oregon, Buresh’s love of tropical flowers dates back to her time living and working in Hawaii.
Buresh has participated in Art in Bloom, which happens every two years. This year’s event features 30 different floral designs. "You can actually see the wonderful art and flowers play off each other."
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Judy Jackson, the owner of Chesa Verde, said the concept of interweaving floral design and fine art fascinated her. "I think everyone can put flowers in a vase, but to really make flowers works of art, not many people can do that," Jackson said.
Marilyn Brumfield of Park City’s Silver Cricket Floral & Interiors will create an arrangement based on a Jipae body mask, also from New Guinea.
What to get for Mother’s Day
The reason moms love flowers goes beyond the obvious, Jackson said. Besides being beautiful and strongly perfumed, flowers are frivolous. ""It’s not like getting a pot or pan or microwave," Jackson laughed.
Just because flowers are frivolous doesn’t mean they should be bought frivolously, though. Here are some recommendations from the experts:
Buy orchids. They last a long time, even if they can be difficult to maintain.
Consider the container. Buresh recommends selecting a unique vase, or bringing one from home, to the flower shop.
Think spring. Nothing says May flowers like bright tulips, hydrangeas and roses.
Stop and smell them. It’s nice to stop and smell the roses, as the saying goes, but they shouldn’t stop you. Flowers with strong fragrances, such as the Casablanca lily, should be reserved for large spaces where the scent can waft.
Art in Bloom runs May 16 and 17 from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Adult tickets are $10. For more information, please call 801-585-9880 or visit umfa.utah.edu.