Art in Bloom

What do you get when you combine the efforts of talented visual artists and floral designers? You can see the results, “Art in Bloom,” at the Garden Club of Jacksonville on May 3-4, when the Jacksonville Artists Guild teams up with the Garden Club to transform the building into a beautiful gallery of juried art and floral designs in unique traditional and contemporary settings. The event provides an opportunity to see some of the area’s best artists and floral designers compete for ribbons and awards.
The seed for the show was planted last summer when two friends, Lynn McClow from the Jacksonville Artists Guild and Debbie Byrd from the Garden Club, were talking over cocktails about their respective loves – art and flowers. They decided their two groups needed to join forces for an art/flower show, and “Art in Bloom” was the result.
The event will feature 25 artists whose works were selected in a juried event held earlier this year. Twelve of the artists’ pieces will be paired with a floral design created especially to complement the artwork. The remaining art will be exhibited throughout the gallery, along with two additional groups of floral designs: an exhibit of miniatures created in the “style” of artists like Picasso, Calder and Degas, and another exhibit of framed spatials, tubular, and structural designs. Add to this a Horticulture show for amateur gardeners, youth gardeners’ exhibits, a garden boutique, and an ‘opportunity drawing’ with chances to win beautiful artwork, sculpture, a hypertufa succulent garden, and a behind-the-scenes tour of the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.
The show will be open for a sneak preview on Friday, May 3, from noon until 2 pm. On Saturday, May 4, the show will be open from 10 am until 3 pm. Tickets will be on sale for $10 at the Garden Club Office, 1005 Riverside Avenue (Monday through Friday, 9 am-3 pm), and at the door on the days of the show.
On May 3 from 5-8 pm there will be a “Gala in the Garden,” where attendees will enjoy music, hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, and a special viewing of the show. Tickets for the evening gala are $25, and may only be purchased in advance at the Garden Club. Call 904-355-4224 for ticket information, as well as for entry rules for the Horticulture exhibit.
While this is the first time they have teamed together, the two groups are not so very different in their respective missions. The Artists Guild is a non-profit organization focused on visual arts education. Its members have varying levels of experience, but they all share a love of and an interest in the arts. They hold monthly meetings where guest artist speakers share their experiences and knowledge about artistic processes.
The Garden Club is also a non-profit group focused on education about the environment, horticulture, gardening, and floral design. Its members support civic organizations such as the Riverkeeper, the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, and the Arboretum, as well as youth gardening projects.
Chairpersons for “Art in Bloom” are Carole Mehrtens and Lynn McClow from the Artists Guild and Linda Curran, Nan Chopskie, and Brook Owens from the Garden Club. They are assisted by a host of volunteers from both organizations. For further information, please visit both and