Orchid Daze Celebrates Latin Landscapes
Orchid Daze, the Atlanta Botanical Garden's annual indoor plant exhibition February 1 - April 12, celebrates the vibrant presence of orchids in the contemporary gardens of Latin America.
Across Latin America are many spectacular artists' gardens, and Orchid Daze draws its inspiration from the works of Luis Barragán, one of Mexico's greatest and most original artists. Educated as an engineer, he also became one of the most influential modernist architects of the 20th century.
Some of Barragán's designs were intimate in scale. When he received the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1980, Barragán stated, "You have to make homes become gardens and the gardens, home. Intimacy and home should be there, in the enclosed garden." Barragán's enclosed gardens combine the clean lines of the Modernist movement with the vivid colors of rural Mexico. His gardens juxtapose light with shadow and hard edges with fluid water features.
Orchid Daze, designed by Tres Fromme of 3Fromme Design, begins in the Fuqua Conservatory Lobby, transformed into a high-walled contemporary garden with bold colors and some of Latin America's most beautiful orchids - arching Laelia orchid spikes and frothy Cattleya orchids - along with candy-colored bromeliads and spiky agaves. The sun-drenched Corridor becomes another enclosed garden with one of Barragán's signature set pieces: two opposing mango-colored walls with windows that create a juxtaposition of brilliant sun and deep shadow. Yellow and tangerine Oncidium orchid spikes cascade into the Corridor from the window niches. As the Corridor opens into the Orchid Atrium, a cooler color palette prevails, and a beautiful narrow fountain murmurs between tall shocking pink and blue walls, two of Barragán's trademarks.
Sweetly fragrant Pansy orchids and jewel-toned Odontoglossum orchids carpet the pavers surrounding the water feature. A serene water garden is the focal point of the Orchid Display House. Water tumbles from a wall of large-flowered Lycaste, fragrant Cattleya and lush maidenhair fern into the black water of a reflection pond, forming a tranquil finale for the exhibition. In addition to the exhibition,
Orchid Daze includes Orchid Market Weekends February 1 - 2, March 7 - 8 and April 4 - 5 when visitors can find a wide variety of orchids and potting supplies for sale as well as artwork and crafts by local artists. On Saturdays of those weekends, bring up to two orchids to the Orchid Care Clinics for expert advice; $5 repotting, materials available.