Every year an organisation called the World Flower Council invites floral designers to gather in a host country for a week of floral activities.
In 2018, Australia was the host with Brisbane, Queensland being the venue. The Australian Floral Art Association was offered the opportunity to create a design for the public area of the venue where the delegates would gather for social activities and meals, right outside the main demonstration room. The winning design came from my home state of New South Wales so a team of four travelled to construct and install the design with a bonus of being able to present a table top design individually for the same area.
Of these four table top designs, mine was selected by the organisers as the one to place beside the larger design.
My idea was to reflect, in a contemporary design, something that showed an iconic Australian/New South Wales view. First reactions to this were either the Sydney Opera House or the Sydney Harbour Bridge. I opted for the bridge as it meant I could use my paper spiral weaving technique (click here for step by step instructions).
The paper spirals are used to depict the bridge with a smaller flower placement (the Waratah is the floral emblem of the state) underneath to depict a boat sailing under the bridge. Only native Australian plant material has been used – flannel flowers, waratah, eucalyptus gum.
The technique for the structure created much interest and I met lots of wonderful flower friends whilst explaining how to do it.
I will add that one of my colleagues who attended as part of our construction team is a well known floral art judge. Whilst she loved the structure, her comment on the placements being too “traditional” has made me really focus on placement of plant material in contemporary designs. It is still an area I am very much learning by trial and error!