Human Flower Project


Saturday, May 05, 2012

Araceli’s Flowers on a Seat of Honor

The patron saint of Lucena inspires a distinctive floral outpouring from the faithful of Southern Spain.


The Virgin of Araceli, patroness of Lucena, Spain, dressed in typical Andalusian costume

Photo: Oracion Año Jubilar

On the first weekend in May, residents of Lucena, Spain, make splendid veneration of their town’s patron saint the Virgin of Araceli.

This year the celebration promises to be especially lavish and well attended as it marks a “jubilee,” 450 years since the sacred statue came to Lucena from Rome. The town stretches out its season of celebration from April 30 forward (May is the traditional month of Mary), though Saturday May 5 is climactic: the major procession, will involve the formal offerings of flowers to Our Lady, as the statue moves from a shrine on the outskirts of town through the city to the church downtown.

“As usual, the procession will depart from Paseo de Rojas, and conclude in the Parish of San Mateo, which is home to the Lady of Lucena.

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Posted by Julie on 05/05 at 05:47 PM
Culture & SocietyFloristsReligious RitualsPermalink

Thursday, January 26, 2012

AMDG—With Flowers in Macon

“To the greater glory of God”—fourteen churches lay their flowers in a Macon, Georgia, Catholic sanctuary.


Members of Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church (l-r) Rosa Harris and Paula Cacavias brought flowers and an icon to St. Joseph Catholic Church in Macon, Georgia, last week.

Photo: Beau Cabell, for Macon Telegraph

You know you’ve got a good thing going when people ask: “Why didn’t we think of this sooner?”

That’s been the question this past week in Macon, Georgia, with the city’s first display of interfaith unity. As part of Macon’s Old City Flower Festival, the flower guild members of St. Joseph Catholic Church decided to ask other congregations to come together and decorate.

St. Joseph’s pastor, the Rev. Allan McDonald, “admits he was skeptical “ that other churches would agree to participate and now “says he’s thrilled.” Members of thirteen congregations – Presbyterian, Greek Orthodox, Episcopalian, Baptist and Methodist – have taken part.

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Posted by Julie on 01/26 at 12:04 PM
FloristsReligious RitualsPermalink

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Flowers Walking at Denver Botanic

Human Flower Project teamed up with floral artist Arthur Williams last week, part of the Bonfils Stanton Series at Denver Botanic Garden.


Jerrica Park (right) and Alicia Cardenas, two of Arthur Williams’s models, mingled with the audience after a gorgeous human-flower demonstration at Denver Botanic Gardens, September 15, a co-show with HFP.

Photo: Human Flower Project

“No one can possess this,” said Arthur Williams. He stood beside a beautiful young woman calmly batting blue eyelashes. She was crowned with anthuriums and orchids, green catkins dangling to her shoulders, and standing tall in combat boots.

After our presentation “White Roses for the Bride, Red Begonias for the Dictator” delivered September 15 at Denver Botanic Gardens, Williams released the fireworks: five models, each a distinct character, conceived in his deep and fluid understanding of the human-floral bond.

We had the honor of speaking at the renowned DBG about how flower customs across the world establish our individual, social, and regional identities. To an audience of about 125, we showed images of floral carpets in Poland and chrysanthemum dolls in Japan; we looked at train excursions into the Rockies during the 1890s, travelers picking native wildflowers by the bushel-basketful, and today’s efforts to protect some of those same flowers—and deploy them in the fight against oil and gas drilling.

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Posted by Julie on 09/18 at 01:33 PM
Art & MediaCulture & SocietyFloristsGardening & LandscapePermalink

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Macy’s Uppity Flower Show

Georgia Silvera Seamans takes us on a multigenerational visit to the Macy’s spring Flower Show, an adventure in verticality and exuberance.


Above the Fray—one of the “towering’ floral displays at this year’s Macy’s Flower Show in New York

Photo: Georgia Silvera Seamans, Local Ecologist

By Georgia Silvera Seamans

The Macy’s Flower Show began as a “fragrance festival” at the Union Square Macy’s in San Francisco.  That was in 1946.  In 1953, the first official Macy’s Flower Show was held at the Herald Square Macy’s in New York City.  Between 1966 and 1973, the NYC show was not held due to the high cost of “maintaining cut flowers,” but the show returned in 1974 with potted flowers, a less expensive option.

This year’s theme was “Towers of Flowers,” which meant many of the gardens were displayed above eye level: a good way to keep visitors’ fingers off the displays but not so “handy” for seeing plants.

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Posted by Julie on 05/12 at 03:50 PM
Art & MediaFloristsSecular CustomsPermalink
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