Following up the smashing success of its previous exhibition of Zanele Muholi photographs, the Cummer Museum of Art and Gardens has announced its next major exhibition will feature British installation artist Rebecca Louise Law. She has been commissioned to create and implement a site-specific installation using flowers and natural materials t0 explore the relationship between humanity and nature.
The show opens on Friday, July 30, running through through January 9, 2022.
A proponent of sustainability, Law will incorporate 1.2 million flowers from her previous installations around the world in the creation of the Museum’s installation, which required more than 1,200 community volunteer hours to install.
“I want this installation to be a physical and participatory experience. After exploring the intimacy of the womb and the sensation of being consumed and cocooned in nature, I would like to explore the momentum of life,” Law said. “From the second we are formed in cells we are moving and changing, within a world that is also evolving. The motion of walking through nature and witnessing its many forms from life to death. This rhythmic cycle that we are all participants of fascinates me. This installation will be a short journey through nature, with its many forms and scents, stimulating the senses to the extreme.”
“Law’s site-specific installation, The Journey, is a timely invitation to immerse ourselves in nature’s abundant splendor and soak in its awe-inspiring beauty,” Andrea Barnwell Brownlee, Ph.D., the Museum’s George W. and Kathleen I. Gibbs Director and CEO, said. “In recent months, most have at times felt fragile, depleted and vulnerable. Law’s poetic installation, incorporating millions of delicate dried and fresh flowers that have been painstakingly linked together by hand, is an apt metaphor for our shared quest to emerge stronger and more resilient than ever. This exhibition promises to activate our senses and ignite collective joy. We are privileged to present an original installation by this internationally acclaimed artist, whose work introduces new dimensions to the Museum’s emphasis on art, gardens, and education.”
Law uses dried and fresh flowers in her work, illuminating the time-bound and natural process of decay, which is an integral part of her practice. Inspired by the dried flowers that hung in her attic as a child, Law’s “sculptures” are suspended from above and held together with copper wire, which are assembled by volunteers.
The volunteer effort began in mid-July with community members assisting in stringing together garlands of flowers and taking partial ownership of the installation — an aspect of the project that the artist feels passionate about.
“The Cummer Museum is thrilled that so many community members jumped at the opportunity to take part in the installation of Rebecca’s exhibition,” Holly Keris, the Museum’s J. Wayne & Delores Barr Weaver Chief Curator, said. “While community participation has always been an important component of her work, whether actively by wiring flowers or more passively through physically and emotionally immersing themselves in the finished product, it has taken on a new level of significance during the pandemic. I hope visitors experiencing this installation will take a moment to delight in the abundance of the Earth, marvel at the interconnectivity of people and nature and our individual roles within our community microcosm and contemplate our collective journey over the past year.”
About Rebecca Louise Law
Based in the Snowdonia National Park in Wales, Law has been commissioned to create installations at the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens, Chandran Gallery in San Francisco, Kew Royal Botanic Gardens in London and in New York City’s Times Square, among other venues. Her work has been exhibited at a range of galleries and at major institutions, including the Royal Academy and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
About the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens
For nearly 60 years, the Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens has been committed to engaging and inspiring through the arts, gardens, and education. A permanent collection of more than 5,000 objects and historic gardens on a riverfront campus offers nearly 140,000 annual visitors a truly unique experience on the First Coast. Nationally recognized education programs serve adults and children of all abilities, and is committed to ensuring that diversity and inclusion are woven into the fabric of the Museum. For further information, including hours, visit www.cummermuseum.org.