Friday, June 7, 2019

@NYBG Launches newest exhibit "BRAZILIAN MODERN: THE LIVING ART OF ROBERTO BURLE MARX" Saturday, July 8, 2019 #NYBG #plantlove


Roberto Burle Marx (August 4, 1909 – June 4, 1994) was a Brazilian landscape architect, painter, print maker, ecologist, naturalist, artist and musician whose designs of parks and gardens and passionate commitment to plant conservation made him world-famous. He is accredited with having introduced modernist landscape architecture to Brazil. He was known as a modern nature artist and a public urban space designer. His work had a great influence on tropical garden design in the 20th century. Water gardens were a popular theme in his work. He was deftly able to transfer traditional artistic expressions such as graphic design, tapestry and folk art into his landscape designs. He also designed fabrics, jewelery and stage sets.  He was one of the first people to call for the conservation of Brazil's rainforests. More than 50 plants bear his name. He amassed a substantial collection of plants at his home, including more than 500 philodendrons.

I had the opportunity to attend the Media Preview Day for this amazing exhibit that opens Saturday, July 8, 2019 to the public.

The exhibit brings a taste of Brazil to New York City and I couldn't resist sharing this vibrant preview video from New York Botanical Garden:

Warning: For some reason my template is smushing my photos more than usual today so please press on them to see them full size.

We started off our morning right with amazing smoothies from the Merenda Food Truck!

Above: Merenda Food Truck, New York Botanical Garden, May 2019

Above: Nabbed a quick shot of the smoothie selection before Media grabbed them all up!

Above: Close Up of my Pineapple, Banana, Mango Smoothie from Merenda Food Truck

Above: We were able to stroll to the Enid Haupt Conservatory while enjoying our smoothies and arrived to the sounds of live Brazilian Music!

Above: Opening Remarks, Media Preview Day, Brazilian Modern: The Living Art of Roberto Burle Marx, New York Botanical Garden, May 2019

Above: Left: Todd Forrest, Vice President for Horticulture and Living Collections at The New York Botanical Garden and Right: Raymond Jungles protégé of Roberto Burle Marx, and a Miami-based landscape designer, who was enlisted to capture the vision of his mentor and longtime friend, take Media through a walk through of the Modernist Garden where a recreated experience of strolling along the Portuguese stone mosaic of Rio's Atlântica Avenue boardwalk (which was designed by Burle Marx), which The New York Botanical Garden has recreated with painted asphalt with abstract, black and white waves.

Above: This fountain is replica of the artist's wall-sized concrete mural at the Banco Safra headquarters in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Above: I even managed to nab video! You can hear Todd Forrest giving us an overview of the exhibit in conjunction with the sound of the fountain.

Above: Triangle Palm, Native to Madagascar, artist Burle Marx planted this tree throughout his estate carefully positioning each plant as a work of art


Above: Biscayne Boulevard, Miami Florida, Built 1999 -  2004

In the New York Botanical Garden - The LuEsther T. Mertz Library you will find art and special tapestries, Guest Curator Edward J. Sullivan introduced us to the exhibition and described the collection of curated paintings, drawings and textiles.

You know just how much I love EXPERIENCES, and the events this year at the Garden have included so many engaging activities, and this one was no exception, after we experienced the collection we got the opportunity to create our own art.

Above: In the The LuEsther T. Mertz Library we got the chance to create an azulejo, a style of painted tile that originated in Islamic Spain. Azulejos became a signature of Portuguese design in the 16th and 17th centuries often covering the walls of buildings. In colonial Brazil the decorative tiles also helped shield buildings from the heat and the humidity.

Above: Of course Ascending Butterfly needed to create a 'Butterfly Azulejo' and leave a piece of my creativity on the wall too! Here is a close up of my creation.

Above: First you got the closeup, now here is my Azulejo on the wall.

Above: A shot of others creating their Azulejos

Below: Be on the look out for quotes interspersed throughout the exhibits!

"Consider how each plant, possessing its own particular color, is enriched with meaning when juxtaposed with another color or another plant. In nature these relationships are not happenstance..." ~Roberto Burle Marx "Garden and Ecology" 1969

Schedule of events:

Opening Weekend: Saturday and Sunday, June 8 - 9, 2019

Ending: Sunday, September 29, 2019

WHERE: The New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, New York

My Take:

I have been visiting this New York City Landmark since childhood and have always been amazed at The New York Botanical Garden's amazing ability to take a space I know so well and continually transform it and reinvent it. Their exhibitions are imaginative and creative and this one is no exception.

Bringing a taste of Brazil to the Bronx was no easy feat with tropical trees arriving during a very cold and wet month of May. None died in transition, they proved to be much like the people who surround The New York Botanical Garden and live in it's surrounding community - strong and resilient!

Roberto Burle Marx led an amazing life, I was surprised to learn he started off as an Opera Singer, his journey from Opera Singer to landscape artist and ecologist is an interesting one. Much like the transition from caterpillar to butterfly don't you think? Starting off as one thing and then life turning you into that great thing you are meant to be.

I can't wait to see how this exhibition evolves and grows!

The official hashtag for The New York Botanical Garden Events this year is #plantlove so if you do attend the exhibit, please tag your photos with the official hashtag I would love to see them!

Little known trivia about me: I once worked with a VP in the Finance Industry much of his work took him to our offices in Brazil, the team there spoke both Spanish and Portuguese but very little English, and I spoke Spanish and English but very little Portuguese, over time we would teach other words and I was beginning to pick up a bit of Portuguese before I not only switched gears to a new job, but switched industries entirely.

I still have a love of Brazilian Music! I have not yet had the chance to visit Brazil and hope to remedy that soon.

READERS: Have you been to The New York Botanical Garden? Have you visited Brazil?

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a compensated post, this is an Event Recap and all opinions are 100% my own!  The love however is genuine, NYBG is one of my favorite places in New York City! I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure.


  1. It really is amazing how they can take the same space and transform it so thoroughly and so quickly. It's a lovely place to visit.

  2. Kristine Nicole AlessandraJune 10, 2019 at 3:18 AM

    Roberto Burle Marx is has so much creative talent. Even the plants were artistically positioned. His designs are really awesome. What a wonderful exhibit to visit!

  3. I haven't been in New York Botanical Garden. I have always wanted to see it. It's a nice space!

  4. I would love to see this exhibit featuring Roberto Burle Mar at the New York Botanical Garden. It seems so interesting to learn more of Brazil.