Flower Force Opening Reception
December 5 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Sunday, December 5, 2021 at 1 p.m.
at the Hibiscus Gallery at Pinecrest Gardens
11000 SW 57th Ave, Pinecrest, FL 33156
You are invited to join local artist Xavier Cortada in welcoming Miami Art Week! On December 3rd, 2021, the opening reception for his solo exhibition “Flower Force” is the first since its closing in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and is a decade-long exploration of his evolving body of work exploring the importance of wildflowers.
In his latest public artwork and the exhibition’s namesake, “Flower Force,” a sphere sculpture clad in ceramic flowers serves as the heart of a participatory reforestation effort where 200 families planted flowers in their yard with one of his hand-painted ceramic sculptures to generate discussions about saving pollinators, transforming lawns into gardens that conserve water, decreasing the use of pesticides and protecting ecosystems across South Florida.
By bringing public art to residents’ front yards, the artist blurs the lines between public and private, hoping to catalyze a collective reimagining of what public art is and can be.
Also on display are Cortada’s other wildflower-themed public artworks including 80.15W, which is in the permanent collection of the NSU Art Museum of Fort Lauderdale, and socially engaged projects Native Flags and Miami Mangrove Forest.
ABOUT FLOWER FORCE
The site of this public art piece is on the historic hunting grounds of the Tequesta people who lived a mile to the east, along the water’s edge. In 1513, conquistadores claimed the peninsula for Spain and named it La Florida – from flor, the Spanish word for flower.
That encounter with Western colonizers five centuries ago initiated a series of actions that forever changed our state and its ecosystems. On July 17, 1821, Spain formally transferred Florida to the United States. Since then, we have continued to transform our landscape. Slowly at first, but then almost irrevocably after the industrial revolution and during the twentieth century (destroying wetlands, bulldozing forests, and exploiting natural resources to meet our insatiable need for development). The Flower Force sculpture was built at a traffic circle to harken to the times when the peninsula’s residents lived in tune with nature.
To activate this public art commission, Cortada, in conjunction with the Village of Palmetto Bay’s Art in Public Places program, is inviting 200 of his Palmetto Bay neighbors to be part of the Flower Force. Using the public art piece as the heart of the Flower Force initiative, 200 Palmetto Bay households will receive one of Cortada’s ceramic flowers to install outside of their home as they plant a new native wildflower garden in their yard. Through this process, an ecological restoration effort will radiate from the flower sphere at the traffic circle in Palmetto Bay and extend to the rest of the state.