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Past Exhibits at Selby Gardens

Jean and Alfred Goldstein Exhibition Series

Begun in 2015, this immersive exhibition series curated by Carol Ockman, Ph.D., Selby Gardens’ Curator-at-Large and Robert Sterling Clark Professor of Art History Emerita at Williams College in Massachusetts, examines master artists and their relationships to nature in the context of a botanical garden. Seeing master works of art—often on loan from major art institutions around the world—in a garden setting awakens new comparisons in viewers’ minds.

Roy Lichtenstein: Monet’s Garden Goes Pop! (2020)

This exhibition showcases the legendary Pop artist’s screen prints based on Monet’s world-famous paintings of waterlilies and haystacks. Lichtenstein’s rarely seen Water Lilies and Haystacks provide an unexpected homage to a staple of the public imagination — Monet’s paintings of his garden and home at Giverny that inspired them.

The display of Lichtenstein’s art in the midst of a horticultural evocation of Giverny creates a unique experience for more than 100,000 garden visitors. Selby Gardens, transformed into Monet’s famed gardens at Giverny through the Pop Art lens of Roy Lichtenstein, includes iconic elements of Monet’s garden such as the green Japanese bridge, trellises, and benches. This conjuring of Lichtenstein’s world also serves as the dynamic backdrop to the lush plantings and mixed borders for which Monet’s paintings were renowned.  An avid gardener, Monet once said, “My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.”   Marie Selby Botanical Gardens evokes this crowning achievement with a surprising Pop Art twist.

Salvador Dali: Gardens of the Mind (2020)

Gauguin: Voyage to Paradise (2019)

The exhibition featured a bold blending of the expected and the unexpected.  Floral and plant displays in the gardens paid homage to key motifs in Dali’s work such as eggs, eyes, crutches, and mathematical concepts. The Museum of Botany & the Arts showcased ten colorful photolithographs of flowers by Dali, along with works from American photographer Clyde Butcher’s series Visions of Dalí’s Spain.The exhibition was in collaboration with The Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Paul Gauguin left an indelible mark on the post-Impressionist art world during the latter part of the 19th Century, and the deep impact of botanical imagery in his work cannot be denied. The exhibition featured dramatic woodcuts and rarely seen works in other mediums by the artist. Living displays throughout the grounds and in the Tropical Conservatory showcased rare and stunning plants from the tropics whose lore influenced Gauguin’s worldwide travel experiences and are featured in his repertoire.

Warhol: Flowers in the Factory (2018)

Marc Chagall, flowers, and the French Riviera: The Color of Dreams (2017)

Warhol had an unexpected artistic influence: the natural world. The artist’s particular interest in botanical life was illustrated through a colorful, focused exhibition at Selby Gardens. The exhibition featured four iconic Warhol silkscreens of hibiscus and two poinsettia prints by Warhol. The Gardens were transformed into a floral playground inspired by Warhol. Explosions of color, texture, and height captured Warhol’s energy and created a mutually enriched experience of  art and nature.

This exhibit introduced a new way to examine the artwork of the prolific artist Marc Chagall. Included in the exhibit was his masterwork painting “The Lovers,” (1937). Guests wandered through the Tropical Conservatory adorned with reproductions of Chagall’s nature-inspired stained glass. In the Gardens, flora like orchids, bromeliads, bougainvillea and citrus trees evoked the south of France.

The Orchid Show

As the only botanical garden in the world dedicated to the display and study of orchids, bromeliads, gesneriads and ferns, epiphytes, and tropical plants, Selby Gardens hosts an orchid show each fall at the Downtown Sarasota campus focusing on different themes and complimented by a variety of special lectures, classes, and events.

Take a look at some of our past Orchid Shows below.

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