It was a crazy scene at the September 5th opening of “Ethnobotany: An Artists’ Study of Plants” at Seymour Conservatory! The place was packed with plant groupies beguiled by the provocative artworks in the indoor gardens, and artsy types swooning over the Jurassic-size trees and ferns tickling the ceiling of the Victorian glass dome. Seems clear that a conservatory is the ideal meet-in-the-middle place for enthusiasts of both art and science. The ethereal sounds of musicians Alex Tapia and Nate Dybevik floated over the evening, and many interesting conversations.
It was a great honor to curate this show at the century-old conservatory in Wright Park, one of only three such antique gems on the West Coast (the other two are in Seattle and San Francisco). Similarly grand structures have all but disappeared, according to Amy Ryken, Seymour Conservatory Chair. “Ethnobotany: An Artists’ Study of Plants” explores the relationships that have existed between the plant kingdom and human culture down through the ages and around the world. Think about it: from earliest beginnings, the lives of plants have been intertwined with our own existence in the guise of food, clothing, medicine, shelter, transportation, ritual, currency, and more. In this show, 11 artists explore ethnobotany through works that make often surprising connections between contemporary circumstances, plant life, art and science. You can see the exhibit through October 12 – and Seymour Conservatory, an amazing work of art in itself. ~Lisa Kinoshita
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Meanwhile, at Moss + Mineral we’re in overdrive preparing an art opening for Sept. 18, 5-8pm. This event is an awesome prequel to Tacoma Arts Month, and Metal-Urge, two major celebrations of the arts kicking off in October! We’ll be showing hypnotic new work by Jeremiah Maddock; both figurative drawings and the intricately patterned work he is known for. We are watering (yes, watering) bronze sculptures by Kyle Dillehay; the biomorphic pod shapes are designed with a vein-like network of openings through which plants can grow. Metal sculptor Quinn Honan is unveiling an eco table made with wood reclaimed from a 1963 Chevy flatbed truck; the table top is bordered by a shallow steel trough sprouting ferns and mosses.
PLEASE NOTE: WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE TACOMA STUDIO TOUR ON SATURDAY, OCT. 11, MOSS + MINERAL WILL BE OPEN BY APPT. ONLY FROM OCT. 3-14; NORMAL HOURS RESUME OCT. 16.
Check out how art, eco-furniture, and plant terraria bliss out together in our integrated one-room environment – you can take them home to change up your own space, too. Need some help? We are now offering design consulting. It’s not scary, but it is affordable. We are also offering artful, live botanical arrangements for local delivery. Shop hours are Thursday-Saturday, noon-5, and by appointment; please call ahead as hours will vary in October. Thanks.
On the subject of plants, in a dynamic TED talk Los Angeles artist and green activist, Ron Finley, describes his South Central neighborhood and how community gardening is changing it. Witnessing the toxic impacts of fast food, he made a defiant, ebullient response: “I planted a food forest in front of my house.” His idea has gone viral. Please watch this amazing video, and consider the benefits of growing food in your community.
Website by Lisa Kinoshita.
All content – Copyright 2013 by Lisa Kinoshita