AIFD Goes Underground

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Those who think Paris is only about poodles and patisseries are in for a delightful shock when they enter the murky and mysterious catacombs.

The combined talents of more than thirty members of the American Institute of Floral Designers (spearheaded by Ron Mulray) results in non-traditional, yet unquestionably beautiful floral “vignettes.” Many incorporate the image of a skull, as the catacombs were a burial place several centuries ago (and can still be seen today).

A more modern purpose for these underground caverns is use as an expansive canvas for young artists to express their creativity. Ron says that all of the images found on the walls of his team’s exhibits are recreations of those that exist beneath the streets of Paris.

“We had so many options to select from, and we wanted to really represent the range, as each artist has a distinct voice of his or her own,” he says.        

All week long Flower Show guests have flocked to see art-in-the-making as Alex “Psyckoze” Stolypine and friends have turned a blank wall into a stunning mural. A French street artist of renown, Psyckoze joins us through a partnership with the City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program.

Although he is (creatively) most at home in the Paris underground, Alex isn’t new to the Philly scene. In 2010 he led an effort to add a colorful mural (titled “Morning Glory”) to a multi-story mill in the New Kensington neighborhood. The morning glory—a plant many view as a weed, but Psyckoze adores due to its heart-shaped leaves—resurfaces in the new mural at the Flower Show.

Beyond being memorable, the AIFD exhibit shows that art comes in many forms. And whether the artist uses a palette of paints or a pallet of flowers, creativity can’t be denied.

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