Friday, April 17, 2009

Bouquets to Art 2009 – 20th Century Contemporary Art

This is the fifth and final installment of the miniseries on the Bouquets to Art 2009, the 25th anniversary of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco’s largest fundraiser. The best floral designers all over the Bay Area are invited to design a floral creation to be paired with one of the works of art. Today we will visit the galleries on the concourse level, where the 20th Century Contemporary Art resides.

I had to be very, very patient to take the top photograph. This arresting arrangement by Manako Flower Academy was continuously swarmed with admirers who stopped in their tracks to take a closer look from all angles. 

The palm fronds of this arrangements perfectly complement the movement of this beautiful sculpture:

San Francisco may have a large transgender population, but here we have an example of a species transformation. Feline pussy willows have crossed over to become canine:


These red and white anthuriums are an apt choice to convey the circus image of dancing men:


One of the great benefits of attending the opening night gala was that I had a chance to meet several of the floral artist. I had a lovely chat with Heather Dunne about her wonderful, teetering skateboard contribution:

She used barbed wire, gutter screening, and a metal cage with yellow Anthuriums. The skateboard belongs to Tyler, her grandson. She “wanted to capture the intense movement of the skateboarders in their gritty inner city venue. There is a sense of freedom and wild abandon to the scene.”

It wasn’t immediately obvious why there was a grey box in the middle of the room,

but when you look inside, you are rewarded with reflections of red and silver interpreting the mirrored blown glass sculptures next to it:

Here is a triple interpretation. The reindeer moss rests beautifully in the field of geometric leaves while reflecting its mirrors on the display of mirrored blown glass sculptures

I love how one can barely discern where the painting ends and the floral arrangement begins:


Tucked away in the passageway between two galleries, was this delightful interpretation of Michael Glancy’s glass plate and bowl


Somehow it’s fitting that Trilium Design chose triangles for its theme:


This one is called “It’s All About the ‘V’”:


Here are a some more interesting geometrics:

Naturally, with my roots in Amsterdam, I adore this bicycle with yellow tulips created by Their information card reads:

“Our First Lady’s Inauguration Day Attire determined the colors, a bright contrast to the B & W photos. This only Murray is one of my sister’s bikes. She completed in Athens and Beijing in mountain biking (on a different bike!). Dare you to ride from your local farmer’s market with a dozen eggs.”


We all smiled when we saw how the flowers in the ladies' room gave a nod to the Andy Warhol exhibit:


I hope you enjoyed touring the Bouquets to Art. Maybe next March you can plan to come to San Francisco and see the show in person. 

Many more photos at my Flickr account here.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Bouquets to Art 2009 – The Upper Galleries Continued

Next year, when I go to Bouquets to Art, someone has to stop me from taking so many photos. I hope you are not growing weary of the same topic, but how could I not honor these great artists? Here comes another installment in my Bouquets to Art miniseries. Today I will complete the upper gallery level which houses art in America up to the 20th century.
Do you remember, back in the 2007 Bouquets to Art, the faboulous use of black satin for Robert Henri's "Lady in Black with Spanish Scarf"? This year, there are more examples of fabric use to reinforce the connection between floral art and painting, like the perfectly draped, rich red robe featured above.
Mary Ann De Moss struck just the right note with the traditional bouquet of hydrangeas and white tulips floating on a cloud of blue tulle.

The blue ribbon on the arrangement for Joseph Wright’s portrait of John Coats Browne was just the right touch.

If you hadn’t noticed the cane in this portrait before, you will never forget it now:

I like how this piece mimics the shape of the bonnet without overtly looking like a bonnet:

Church Street Flowers turned in a very clever entry. Not only did they echo the pipe in the painting with a real pipe but they added the pipe-shaped nepenthes pitcher plants and “smoke” from the smoke tree.
Speaking of clever, I thought Neil Hunt’s inverse swan silhouette was very clever:
And how clever to use the vase to connote the essential form of the John Singer Sargent’s portrait of Caroline de Bassano, Marquise d'Espeuilles:
This maypole was positively enchanting:
Here, David Alexander’s boatload of “clouds” gently float by the Mississippi river:

Like I mentioned in the last post, there were several entries that seemed to apply to more than one work of art. As I recall, this was the intended target.
But the silver protea leaves also worked beautifully with these fish.
Succulents continue to be wildly popular both in the gardening and floral worlds:

Sometimes all that’s needed are some loosely arranged magnolia and camellia branches, freshly cut from the garden. I can imagine the lady in the portrait completing this arrangement just prior to stepping back inside the painting.

Next time, I will take you back downstairs to see floral creations for the 20th century contemporary art. For more photos and a sneak peek of what's to come, see my flickr set here.
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