If man ever abandoned (or was forced to leave) Earth, it wouldn’t take long before the land started reclaiming our buildings. Bloom, a project from artist Anna Schuleit, doesn’t illustrate exactly what that natural decaying process would be, but it does reveal what can happen when nature and buildings collide.
The project, which was open to the public in November 2003, turned the Massachusetts Mental Health Center–a building that was being demolished and replaced with an updated facility after nine decades of operation–into a haven of flowers. Schuleit placed 28,000 potted flowers in the facility, including orange tulips, red Regina mums, and blue African violets.
The artist aimed to make the project a community remembrance of the building and the people who inhabited it, many of whom never received flowers during their stay in the facility. She also hoped to infuse a palette of texture, colors, and scent that hadn’t been there previously.
Schuleit discusses the community reaction to the piece on Colossal Art and Design: “The reactions to Bloom ranged from expressions of delight to raw and renewed sorrow. It was a strange duality: At its core this project was intended to allow people free access to a building that had always been locked and mysterious, while opening its doors also (and especially) to those who had been there for years.”
If only every building could have a room exploding with flowers (or at least some beautiful intrusion from nature), we might all be a lot happier.