Monday, March 14, 2011

Celebrating Creativity at the Flower Show

This past weekend, my husband and I got a babysitter for the girls, and headed to the Philadelphia Flower Show on its final day. I knew that I would see breathtaking arrangements of flowers in interesting displays around the Convention Center Hall. But I ended up seeing flowers used in much more creative ways than I had imagined. This post is a kind of "pictorial celebration" of the different kinds of creativity I saw on display at the Flower Show.

I especially loved the theme for the year, "Paris in Springtime." My husband and I took an amazing and memorable trip to Paris in the springtime in 2006. We couldn't exactly recreate the experience here, but there was plenty at the Flower Show to bring back good memories.
(A self-portrait thanks to a long-armed husband!)

I was especially fascinated by the wall of pictures made entirely of pressed plant materials. As I understand it, the artists had to use only natural plant materials, with no color added by paints or other means.

Amazing! Remember--only natural pressed plant materials!

Perhaps equally fascinating was the display of jewelry made entirely from natural plant and flower materials. Here, the artists could add color and embellish in certain ways. There is a little card above each piece that shows each material (in its natural state) used in the item.
(I didn't take a photo of the one next the this one, but it was an actual working watch!)

There was another section with purses and handbags embellished with plants and flowers; here's a sample:

Another fascinating section had little windows we could peer in to see miniature rooms, enhanced by miniature landscapes. The only drawback to this part was the incredibly long wait. We stood in line and waited...and waited...and waited...for everyone else to peer at the little rooms behind the glass. All that waiting took its toll:
(My husband forbid me to delete this photo from the camera, so I thought, 'What the heck, I'll put on my blog!')

Turns out, the exhibit was worth the wait!

(After we were finished, we wished we had held up a hand or something to give a sense of perspective to how tiny these spaces were! They were only maybe a foot and a half across. What unbelievable and realistic detail.)

We got to see creativity in action with the folks at work on their bonsai trees:

And we also got to see botanical illustrators in action:

I was excited to end the day with a visit to the marketplace, where I found this lovely space by Jill Schwartz, an artist and jewelry-maker I've been reading about in magazines for YEARS:

I splurged and bought a memento of the day:

As many photos as I included in this post, there were many more I had to hold myself back from including. What a picturesque experience to attend a flower show! I have no talents or interests related to gardening and plants and flowers, and yet was interested to see all the varied examples of creative expressions at the show.


Unknown said...

Beautiful! It's been a little "tradition" for my son (well, now "sons", since my littler one just made his 2nd trip with us last week) and I to go to the Flower Show with my mom each year. He so loves going and starts asking about it around late autumn! Though I think I saw more in your pictures than I did while I was actually there (the definite downside of the "take-the-kids" tradition...)! If it didn't cost so much, I think I'd go twice!

Anne said...

The natural plant pictures reminded me how amazed I am watching the Rose Bowl floats when they list all the natural plant/seed/pod elements.
Can I just say -- that second picture of you looked like you'd been a bit overwhelmed by all the creativity surrounding you!!!

Andria said...

Kristin, That's a great tradition for your kids! Several times during the show, though, I commented to my husband how grateful I was that we weren't trying to usher our two toddlers through the crowds, or trying to push a stroller through. It gets a little hectic! (Hence the "lovely" photo I included somewhere around the middle of the post!)