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Garden clubs create pieces of nature inspired by art

March 18, 2004|by KATE COLEMAN

katec@herald-mail.com

Nature has long been an inspiration for art. This weekend, though, it is art that will inspire nature at Washington County Museum of Fine Arts in Hagerstown.

"Art in Bloom" will feature floral designs created by members of 14 of the Federated Garden Clubs of Maryland's District V, the western part of the state. Each fresh flower arrangement is inspired by one of 16 works - paintings, works in colored pencil, bronze, plaster - even a paperweight - from the museum's collection.

The designs and the art will be on display at the museum from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, March 19, during the "Pick a Palette Preview Evening."

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Tickets at the door for the preview reception cost $25 and include wine and hors d'oeuvres from local fine dining establishments. The event, co-hosted by Hagerstown and Town & Country Garden clubs, benefits the museum. Last year's "Art in Bloom," the event's premiere, raised more than $4,600, said Deanna Soulis of the Hagerstown Garden Club.

Last year, members of Soulis' club interpreted a "sizable" bronze sculpture by Anna Coleman. The 1927 artwork depicts a sitting Maria Geritzer, a Czech soprano in the Metropolitan Opera.

They designed to capture the line of the form and time period of the sculpture - using orchids, gardenias, greenery and a peacock feather.

Interpreting the sculpture was fun because it aroused the designers' creativity, Soulis said.

The artwork selected for "Art in Bloom" is varied. Still life, landscape and portrait styles are represented, said Amy Hunt, museum curator. She tried to choose pieces that would be interesting and challenging. "We tried to make sure they would be evenly distributed throughout the gallery spaces."

The "Art in Bloom" display will continue through the weekend. At 2:30 p.m. Sunday, March 21, Bob Morgan of Display Concepts will create a floral design and display interpreting "Fantasy," a large 1924 painting of four naked women dancing in the woods. With vibrantly colored flowers, a large stone pedestal and moss, he will render the painting's impressionist mood.

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