One of my favorite places at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is the peaceful area around Charles B. Foster’s sculpture titled “Slow Dance”. I couldn’t resist taking this photo during my most recent visit when I noticed the Florida Flame Azalea’s had begun to bloom.
10,000 daffodils are “in bloom” across the courtyard of Somerset House in Britain. But even at a glance, their petals are more in line with the walls of the 18th-century architecture encompassing them than the gardens of the U.K. It’s nothing you’d expect to see in the average spring display.
Each flower is the hand-crafted product of artist Fernando Casasempere’s creative take on environmental uncertainty, the pattern of the seasons, and the fragility of nature. Using native Chilean clay from his home country, along with various industrial byproducts such as rebar scraps, the installation stands in apt (if dramatic) contrast to the cheerful yellow and white daffodils we see around the Garden.
I do love industrial art; I suppose it would be an experience to wander in a field of the natural so far removed from what we know. —MN
The Chrysanthemum centrepiece is a reversible design that can function as either a bowl or a candle holder, depending on which side of the design faces upwards.
The centrepiece reflects my passion for the textures, shapes and patterns found in nature. I especially like to interpret those objects that have a repetitive mathematically founded pattern. Some objects are immediately recognisable, such as the Chrysanthemum, others are more abstract. Direct 3-dimensional manufacturing methods, such as selective laser sintering (SLS) used to create the Chrysanthemum allows me to design intricate textures and objects. These textures and objects would have been impossible to execute by hand, yet the centrepiece still retains the beauty and tactile feeling of a natural object.
In the show’s second segment, LACMA curator Sofía Sanabrais and I discuss the seemingly unlikely story of how exactly Japanese screen painting came to influence Mexican painters during the Spanish colonial period.