Miami artist Xavier Cortada will lead Sweetwater Elementary School students in creating a participatory eco-art project in support of the pollinators. Inspired by his FLOR500 project (www.flor500.com), kids at the school will plant wildflower seeds to grow in their classroom. Each student will have a cup with their name on it. Each student will also create a hand-painted flag celebrating Earth Day. Once sprouted, the student will take the wildflower plants home and plant them alongside their flags. Planting the flag, they will become reverse conquistadores, returning a patch of land back to nature.
A team of scientists selected the 500 native flowers- the same ones that grew in our state when Juan Ponce de Leon landed in 1513 and named it “La Florida”–from “flor,” the Spanish word for flower.
Five hundred Floridians were then invited to depict 500 native wildflowers. The artwork, along with information about each flower, will be posted on the project website (www.FLOR500.com).500 gardens
A team of historians selected individuals who helped shape Florida history. Florida schools and libraries (across the 67 counties and 8 regions) are encouraged to plant 500 wildflower gardens, dedicating them to one of 500 important Floridians selected by a team of historians. These 500 new native habitats will help support Florida’s biodiversity.
“Wildflowers, with help of their pollinators, help make Earth verdant: Plant life sustains all animals (including humans) and balance atmospheric gases (that accelerate global climate change). Wildflowers would naturally continue to blanket our planet were it not for the displacement caused by the concrete we’ve poured ‐‐ and the parcels we’ve platted ‐‐ to build our homes and grow our society. Help reverse the trend: Show us your wild side. Plant wildflowers in your yard.”
— Xavier Cortada
About the Artist:
Cortada often engages scientists in his art-making: At CERN, Cortada and a particle physicist created a permanent digital-art piece to celebrate the Higgs boson discovery. He has collaborated with a population geneticist to explore our ancestral journeys out of Africa 60,000-years ago, with a molecular biologist to synthesize a DNA strand from a sequence 400 museum visitors randomly generated, and with botanists to develop multi-year participatory eco-art efforts to reforest mangroves, native trees and wildflowers across Florida.
The Miami artist has created environmental installations (North Pole and South Pole) and eco-art (Taiwan, Hawaii and Holland) projects, and painted community murals addressing peace (Cyprus and Northern Ireland), child welfare (Bolivia and Panama), AIDS (Switzerland and South Africa) and juvenile justice (Miami and Philadelphia) concerns.
Fore more info visit http://www.cortada.com