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FRANK exhibit aims to please both sight and smell

Visitors will use not only their sense of sight, but also smell today while enjoying the most recent FRANK Gallery exhibition, “Art in Bloom.”  

The show was created in collaboration with the Chapel Hill Garden Club. Participants chose artworks from FRANK and used them as inspiration for flower arrangements. The arrangements constructed by the floral designers will be installed at FRANK today.

Torey Mishoe, gallery manager at FRANK, said this is the first time the gallery has collaborated with the Chapel Hill Garden Club. She said the event is exciting because it brings together many different elements of visual art.

“Its not just flower design, but it’s design inspired by artwork at the gallery by local artists that everyone has come to know, as well as bringing in the elements of spring and florals and the gallery,” Mishoe said.

Mishoe also said she is excited to see how the artists interpret the different pieces of artwork.

“It’s going to be very interesting to see what artful arrangements they come up with to go along with the work because many of them didn’t choose traditional pieces like paintings of florals or paintings of bright colors,” she said.

“Some of them chose black-and-white photography and other things as well.” 

Betsy Nininger, the Garden Club’s flower design chairwoman, teaches a flower design class and will have her own design on display today. A few of the students from her class will have their arrangements on display at the gallery as well.

Nininger is a seasoned floral designer and said she enjoys the interpretative aspect of flower design.

“It’s kind of fun to see what someone sees in a painting and how they are able to convey what they see,” she said.

“Its just a fun event. I think the public loves flower design — it’s just a nice pairing — they love flower design, they love art."

Chapel Hill Garden Club president Christine Ellestad said floral interpretation projects such as this are new to Chapel Hill.

“I don't know of any other exhibits exactly like this in the area where art is interpreted into floral arrangements,” she said.

Ellestad collaborated with Mishoe to make the show happen.

“(I) ran into Torey — the manager there — and told her I had been to San Francisco and had seen a floral arrangement show there that interpreted art,” Ellestad said. 

“I said, ‘OK, we have floral designers, you have beautiful art — why don’t we get together and have a show?’”

Ellestad said she hopes to not only showcase great art, but also to promote the Chapel Hill Garden Club’s upcoming spring garden tour. Tickets for the tour will be on sale at the gallery, and the tour will take place on May 3 and 4.

Ellestad will also have an arrangement on display at the event. She said the different dimensions of artwork become even more interesting when they are brought together.

“It’s fun to think about two-dimensional art with three-dimensional flowers,” she said. 

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