The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston had its annual “Art in Bloom” exhibit over the past three days. Works of art–from Asian sculptures to European paintings–are interpreted into floral and plant designs that are positioned in front of the particular piece of art. This year they had two clothing ensembles made from plants and flowers as well (not related to specific art pieces) which to my mind, stole the show. They were designed by Andrew Anderson of ILEX, a design studio, in Boston, Ma.
Each year I come and enjoy the whole exhibit even while scratching my head over some of the interpretations. After I stood in front of one this afternoon for a few minutes and simply couldn’t figure out what the floral designer had in mind, I asked the elderly woman standing next to me if she saw the translation of the painting into this floral piece.
She looked at me as If I’d asked if the Mona Lisa was a good portrait. Then, she proceeded to outline five different ways the floral designer had translated the painting very deftly.
Yup. I saw each and every pattern she pointed out. “Thank you,” I said. “I think I’ll stick with you for the rest of the exhibit,” I joked with her. She looked horrified.
I realized that despite coming to this exhibit for years, and art museums all my life, I don’t have a certain way to analyze exhibits nor any particular “aesthetic” sensibility other than, “Wow! I really like that!”
After the “Art in Bloom” exhibit, I went briefly into the other major exhibit that had just opened, El Greco to Velazquez. A few too many religious themes for this girl, but these boys could paint!
I did amuse myself by thinking, when I got to a very famous portrait of some saint wearing a luscious looking green shawl, that had that same woman been standing next to me, I would have turned to her and said, “Now, is that a nice shade of green or what?”
I love art because there is room for all of us saints and sinners.
I have six or seven photos viewable on my Flickr site of some of the art pieces interpreted by over 63 New England garden clubs.
©Pat Coakley 2008