Art In Bloom has been happening annually at the Minneapolis Institute of Art since 1984, but this was the first year I've been able to attend (these are the silver linings of my missing my Venice life dearly as I'm here taking care of my family). I took my Mom for opening day, and it was nothing short of breathtaking. Spectacular! *(I've been so busy lately between caregiving and other writing that I haven't been able to share many stories here, apologies. THIS demanded its own spotlight for sure though).
Floral artists make arrangements to accompany many of the works of art in the permanent collection at MIA, and there were MANY to see. We were determined to see them all - and did - over a full afternoon of discovering the flowers scattered throughout the entire museum.
Each was more gorgeous than the next, and it was very hard to choose a favorite ... so I'm going to share many of them with you.
As flowers perish, the exhibit is on only this weekend, through Sunday, so I encourage all in Minnesota this weekend to get there, and all the rest of you get to see them virtually, because I know you'd love it too.
The only thing I can't share is the marvelous aroma enveloping the museum ... ahhhh.
It sounded like the process for choosing artworks to honor was a little haphazard, as each artist I spoke to had a different experience of how they wound up with the one they got. One guy just decided to make a floral replica of the Notre Dame football stadium, and find an artwork to match later! He also got extra credit because his glass vases were hand-blown! Wow.
I was amazed to learn that many of the pieces were done by amateur flower arrangers! One lady was a lawyer that likes to arrange flowers, several were retired and fill their days with flowers, and some were from real deal florists from all around the Twin Cities. ALL were glorious.
MIA has such a vast and diverse collection that each room is different than the last, and the flowers followed suit. Materials from nature, and the creativity that resulted in these fantastic creations was truly moving. There is so so so much talent in this world!
There were tours going on, but we opted to go it alone ourselves and revel in the magic of discovery. Several of the artists were on hand, often seen watering or adding flowers and making sure their work was perfect.
That was nice because you could ask questions and hear all about their process ... to the point where now we kind of want to try our hand at it ourselves next year - anyone can!
It was fun to see some of my favorite permanent pieces so honored, like the Native American costume with its top hat and photographic lining beautifully replicated in flowers.
Some artists played it very literal with their recreations ...
While others did more of an abstract representation ...
No matter what they chose to do, we loved every one of them and hoped that they all go to good homes when the show wraps on Sunday. They should auction them off to a good cause, I know I'd be bidding on several just to cheer up the home for a few days. I'm really not sure what happens to them when it's over.
I learned a lot yesterday listening to the artists, about technique, brush strokes, post-Impressionism, realism, structure, all kinds of stuff that came just from asking about flowers. You truly could spend the whole weekend there and still have more to listen and learn from.
It was so packed yesterday that we didn't really linger with any one piece, and that would be fun to do, but there's just so much ground to cover, and people to dodge.
We'd wait our turn to get in close for a second, then scoot away to let someone else in. This would be the one to get locked in for a night at the museum!
I LOVED this one, florally ...
... and then seeing what it represented just felt so joyous.
In these rather bleak times - both weather and world-wise - flowers bursting out everywhere and the good feeling it gave everyone was very heartwarming.
It would be very hard to maintain a bad mood with all this beauty around. Beauty, Art, and Nature truly SAVE. It gives us HOPE.
Look at these whimsical pink shoes!
Look at the Frank Lloyd Wright hallway piece!
Look how they did her black stockings!
Look how good this coat is!
Oh wow, look how they represented this nude woman!
Mom, check out this chair one!
Look how this one is exactly the painting!
I love how the flowers match his jacket!
Oh, I want to crawl inside this one and live here forever!
The above was pretty much a verbatim recording of me enthusing about everything yesterday. We truly enjoyed it so much, and hope that as many people as possible will be able to get to MIA this weekend. It's supposed to rain all weekend, so I can't think of a more perfect way to go cheer yourself up and give the gift of this beauty to your soul.
Thank you to MIA and all of the artists involved, both with their work in the museum collection and the artists who worked with flowers. You truly lifted our spirits ... and what is better than that? I'm going to bring in Yeats (snippets from Ode on a Grecian Urn) to explain the feeling of this beautiful show ...
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know."