|Craft Lake City is pleased to announce its newest seasonal public art exhibition, Celebration of the Hand: Planting For Pollinators. On view from March – April 2023, this exhibition endeavors to enliven the urban landscape of downtown Salt Lake City with artistic renderings of a vibrant, vivacious spring garden while inspiring the public to learn more about the importance of pollination. Craft Lake City invited 14 Utah-based visual artists to each create a piece of large-format digital artwork inspired by a specific species of pollinator-friendly flora for this project. With scientific consultation from Red Butte Garden, each artist was provided with information about the key pollinators that interact with their chosen plant, including various types of bees, moths and hummingbirds, so that the artists could include them in joyous interaction with their flowering species of choice. Celebration of the Hand: Planting For Pollinators aims to inspire Utahns to pay special consideration to pollinators while planning their spring garden, while also encouraging more people to cultivate a garden utilizing the space accessible to them. The public is invited to join Craft Lake City for a free virtual “Lunch & Learn” discussion this Thurs., March 16 at noon MST. In this public online event, Craft Lake City’s Artisan & Programs Manager Liz Vowles will chat with educator and pollination specialist Jonny Gonzalez from Red Butte Garden, as well as some of the contributing artists. Attendees will have the opportunity to share ideas and ask questions about the new exhibition in downtown Salt Lake City.
Whether Utahns have access to a backyard, a community garden plot, or even a small container garden on a balcony or windowsill, anyone can grow beautiful plants that directly benefit the local pollinating ecosystem. Passers-by of this outdoor exhibition can scan a QR code on each of the 14 artworks to learn more about the featured pollinator-attracting species & how to cultivate each of the 14 featured Utah climate-friendly plants.
“Craft Lake City is proud to be spotlighting the beauty & importance of the pollination cycle in the heart of industrial downtown Salt Lake City,” says Liz Vowles, Artisan & Programs Manager for Craft Lake City. “As part of our organization’s mission to elevate the creative culture of the Utah arts community through science, technology, & art, we are energized to be presenting a major STEM cross-over in this high-visibility public art project!”
Jonny Gonzalez is an ecologist turned educator. He has worked in various labs studying ecology through herpetology and especially entomology. He works to make science fun and accessible for general audiences. When he’s not hard at work creating curricula, he can be found searching for insects or wandering around the deserts of Utah.
McKenna Powell‘s artwork includes symbiotic figures and plants, and often convey symbolic elements about death, regrowth, and the changing landscape. She holds a love for nature, and believes society should coexist, and not be above it.