Seventh international festival of gardens and flowers “City Garden” opened in Voronezh in Central Park (10, Lenin Street) on Thursday, September 7. On the first day of the forum, the jury estimated the works of the participants of the traditional exhibition of landscape design and park-and-garden art. The main events of the festival – presentations of art objects, master-classes, interactive programmes, meetings with Russian TV stars – will be held in the park from September 8 to 10.
RIA “Voronezh” reporters picked the most interesting exhibits of the festival that would certainly become the residents’ favorite background for photos. However, not all craftsmen managed to finish their works in time for the first forum day. As the “City Garden” organizers assured, Voronezh residents will be able to see the art objects at their finest on Friday, September 8.
A garden in an egg
A giant steampunk (a trend in design which imitates a civilization that has mastered mechanics and steam engine technologies) Faberge egg made of iron was brought to the festival by Swiss landscape designer Jonas Egger. The egg consists of five petals (each weighting 100 kg) and a calyx with a fountain-tree hidden under the “shell”. The total weight of the composition is 1 ton.
– The concept of a “garden in an egg” is timed to coincide with the Year of Ecology in Russia. The central element of the art object – the egg – symbolizes the germ of life. The shell protects the living organism from the aggressive outside world. The living thing preserved inside is nature itself – a fountain in the form of a tree located in the center that can be seen by the viewers only when the petals open up, - object’s author Jonas Egger explained to the RIA “Voronezh” reporter.
The designer came up with the “garden in an egg” idea in the autumn of 2016 but didn’t manage to implement it right away. Jonas even thought of giving it up – the concept seemed to him too unreal to be embodied. The Swiss designer was rescued by famous kinetics sculptor Andrei Aseryants. He created a unique mechanism, something close to an excavator’s hydraulic pump, which allowed the egg to open up and close.
The full opening of petals takes a minute and a half; the closing process takes longer – four minutes. All of it is accompanied by classic German music (there was no music on the first festival day due to technical failures). When the petals open up and lay on the ground, an iron tree appears in the center of the egg with clouds of steam coming out of it. The inside of the petals is entirely covered with live plants: multicolored Heucherellas, astilbes, ostrich ferns, spleenworts and cranebills.
Art object “Trinity of Life”
From afar, art object “Trinity of Life” installed among trees looks like a wooden ship with sails. Actually, according to the concept of project’s author Andrei Kozlov, the composition represents the source of life.
– Earth, wind and fire, as the basic aspects of life on Earth, form the most important life cycle chain of any living being. This is why these resources became the basis of the concept of this project. The work includes the idea of unity and indissoluble connection of this components as well as their relation to humans who consume these resources and directly affect the nature and peculiarities of their interaction, - Andrei Kozlov told.
The art object consists of three wooden blocks on the outside symbolizing earth, wind and fire, and a single block in the composition center. The central block represents humans who consume and destroys all the gift of nature.
The composition is fully made of natural materials: wood, clothe, ropes. Its creation took three months. All the parts are hand-made. Even the shapes of birds and animals in the wooden circles (over 100) were sawed out with a simple fret saw.
Flower swans in a pond
In 2016, designers of Voronezh company “Ferz” (Queen) created a monument of a cartoon character, kitten Vasily, made of real flowers for the “City Garden” Festival. The composition became one of the favorites of exhibition’s visitors: the flower Vasily was especially popular among newly married couples. According to the designers, last year there was such a flow of people that they had treaded a path on the lawn that had not overgrown to this day.
In 2017, specialists of the company installed an at least just as exquisite art object made of flowers on the same spot – two swans in a pond and dames resting on a bench nearby.
Within two weeks, the company has manufactured the frames of the swans, the pond, welded an iron bench and sewn dresses for the dames. The designers started decorating the composition with flowers at 12:00 on Wednesday, September 6, and finished it at 6:00 the next day.
Each swan figure consists of 1 thousand mum flowers. The dame’s skirt is decorated with over 500 asters. After the closing of the festival, the flower composition will be moved to “Klinichesky” Mini-Market where it will stay for two weeks until the flowers wither.
The Kitten from Lizyukov Street made of withes
Landscape composition “City Garden” with a monument to the Kitten from Lizyukov Street made of withes in the center was created by Anastasia Kaykhanidi.
Apart from the main tourist showplace of Voronezh, the girl included two more landmark symbols of the city in her work: a five-point star at the basis of the composition underlining the City of Military Glory status of Voronezh, and spheres made of withes hanging from the tree branches and symbolizing the vast natural reserves of the region.
The Garden Tea Ceremony
"Garden Tea Ceremony" exposition prepared by the employees of "Central Entertainment Bureau" will tell the visitors of "City Garden" how the burghers and peasants of the Voronezh Province lived at the turn of the VIII-XIX centuries. The exposition includes authentic and restored interior items and utensils collected in the villages of the Voronezh Region.
The main exhibit is an 18-liter brass samovar, produced at the Tula Factory in the late 19th century. The samovar is so well preserved that it serves faithfully to its new owners to this day. Everyone interested can have a tea with thyme and mint brewed in the old samovar.
Since September 8, a flamboyant heroine, a capricious young lady who dreams of finding a bride for her son, will take part in the garden tea ceremony. During the day, every two hours, the young lady will assemble a bouquet of flowers and throw it into the crowd of girls. The authors of the exhibition promise a prize for the ones who catch the bouquets.
The sofa made of cans
The unusual sofa, made of used plastic jerry cans, is not just an original art object at the festival, but one of the design variations of how to use recyclables. Thanks to "Transformation" exposition, the townspeople will learn how the production waste is transformed into interior items and what can be made of plastic jerry cans after recycling at a recycling plant.
Tree of Desires "Eywa"
The authors of the project, TV-Guberniya Director General Zoya Gryazeva and PR Department of the TV company, borrowed the idea of the white tree of desires Eywa from James Cameron’s film Avatar. The tree is made of plastic pipes, decorated with glass wool.
- Eywa is a symbol of eternal life, happiness and fulfillment of the most cherished desires. You do not have to say anything aloud, just think, and the universe will hear what you want to ask it about, the authors of the arrangement explained.
Bells are growing on the branches of the magic tree instead of the leaves. The festival guests are invited to write their most cherished wishes on the special ribbons and hang them on Eywa.
On the first day of "City Garden", a huge line of visitors lined up at Eywa. Within an hour, all the 200 ribbons for wishes were used, and the curators had to go to the store for an additional batch.
A solar hill, a merry-go-round with oxen and a Russian hut
The most large-scale art-object at the festival was traditionally "Hay-Straw" zone, prepared by Lomovsky Natural-Landscape Park. For the first time, this object appeared at the forum in 2013, and since then its popularity among the citizens has been growing every year. At the seventh festival, the area of "Hay-Straw" zone also grew. The straw town was arranged on an area of more than 1.5 hectares, aside from other sites, near the pioneer hill.
20 trucks with hay and five trucks with props were delivered from Vorobyevsky District to create the town.
The slope was decorated with 20 straw smiling suns with rays made of corn, cane and oats.
An unusual ride — a "live" merry-go-round — was built for the young visitors of the festival. It is run by two oxen. The animals walk in a circle, thus rotating the merry-go-round. The oxen — five-year-old Misha and Grisha — are the pride and real stars of Lomovsky Park: in 2015, they acted in Sergei Ursuluk“s series "Quiet Flows the Don."
The straw town is also inhabited by other animals: ponies, a donkey; there is a separate aviary for domestic birds.
A Russian hut with clay walls, reed roof and a real oven was erected in the straw zone especially for the exhibition. All the interior items in it are authentic. Here you can see an old cradle, a bed, barrels, linen and hemp clothing, sticks, a rare stove-lid.
85-year-old ladies, who will weave wool in the eyes of the audience, will add a special charm to the art space.