The three-day festival matches floral designs with artworks and offers lectures and demonstrations with floral interpretations throughout the museum.
The interpretations are labors of love for 31 sets of gardeners and floral designers from around the region. Each pulled a number out of a hat for an assignment, "a vase, a loving cup, a painting, something contemporary or something traditional," said
Each interpreter has a standardized pedestal that's 24 by 24 inches on top and 42 inches high; the floral display can go another 42 inches above that and no further. "It's really, really hard until you get your plant material to see if God is going to let you do your design," Hucker said. "When you're a floral designer, there are many Plan B's."
The annual event began in 2000, inspired by others at museums in
"We have more spaces to work with this time," said the museum's special events director,
This year's featured events include lectures by
Aside from the special events, you'll see flowers wherever you look.
Hucker is coordinating the 16 garden club designers participating in "Bloom," people who typically undertake what she calls "civic gardening duties and put on gardening shows." She noted the difference between design clubs and garden clubs. Design is about "the education, the artsy-fartsy side of it, the principles and elements of design, the kind of balance we're seeing."
The team at Botanicals, which has been part of several earlier "Blooms," has worked on the designs for more than a month; the installation will take three days. "It's just a really incredible, fun experience. There's some unbelievable artistry and inspiration," McDonnell said.
This will be the third Art in Bloom for
"You look at it; of course, you look at the colors and the different textures. You want to try to use flowers that are from
She's done classes before, she said, "but usually I'm the one that's demonstrating, making arrangements, talking about what I'm doing and why I'm doing it. This time, I'm going to do demonstrations (of the techniques); people will be given a list of flowers, pick them out, take them to their tables -- and I'll help them out."
Wildflowers does a new design for the flowers in the Sculpture Hall each month, but this is Winter's first Art in Bloom. "It is a wonderful event because it draws people into all parts of the museum, even parts they wouldn't go into normally. When you go to Art in Bloom, it's good to take a lot of time and see as much of the museum as you can. It's been fun to work on."
Lamprecht anticipates a busy weekend: In 2008, more than 18,000 people visited over three days, and the event was growing. "Every year during the hiatus, I got dozens and dozens of calls asking if this was the year Art in Bloom was coming back," she said. "It's a very exciting time to be in the museum."
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