Client: Brookfield Properties
Location: New York, NY, United States
Completion date: 2019
Artwork budget: $30,000
Curator & Producer
Common Ground Arts LLC
Director, Arts & Events
Floribunda, a two part exhibition of original mixed media artworks and a vinyl installation adapted from an original painting, straddles the worlds of flora, farming and fashion, while playing with ideas of decoration, beauty and sensuality. Sarah Fairchild, the artist, grew up in the midwest surrounded by lush fields and gardens; she connects plants to memories of family and to a deep sense of belonging and purpose. Floribunda is an exploration of the rose and its temporary beauty, representing the struggles and joys within life’s journey. The thorns and stems are as beautiful as the blooms as the artist literally prunes these shapes into a collage of “cut” flowers, an abstract composition reminiscent of Baroque floral paintings. By gilding these roses in gem-colored metallic foils, their full, prickly organic shapes invite viewers into a secret garden.
The goal of this project was to add color and vibrancy to an office building lobby, namely utilizing three whitebox display cases embedded within an interior wall, and two corner windows on the exterior of the building. Fairchild’s oversized blooms and psychedelic hues were perfect for this particular challenge. These artworks added interest and intrigue inviting viewers to step into these dynamic two-dimensional gardens.
Sarah Fairchild is a painter and printmaker, who creates obsessive and visually alluring work that highlights common, often ignored forms, such as plants and vegetables, giving them an otherworldly glow using vibrant hues, metallic foils and a tactile nature with hand-applied flocking. Her technique involves using silkscreens to print on fabric, then covering them with metallic foils, adding another layer of silkscreen designs and painting to achieve dramatic effects. Mirrored details of an original painting were printed on vinyl and installed in corner windows on the exterior of the building. Three original mixed media paintings were installed into the three display cases inside the lobby with delicate thorn motifs in black vinyl framing each piece creating a third dimension to these works.
Common Ground Arts provided curation and project management services to guide the site-specific commission, and worked alongside the artist and a local signage company, ColorEdge, to print, precisely cut and install the exterior vinyl artworks and the details around the interior display cases.