Magnificent 30-Foot-Tall Bird Sculptures Take Flight at Pinecrest Gardens
Immerse Yourself in the First-Ever ‘Avian Oasis’ Exhibit from November 18 to May 23
Pinecrest Gardens, South Florida’s historic botanical gem, proudly announces its first-ever ‘Avian Oasis’ exhibit. From Nov. 18, 2023 to May 23, 2024, visitors can experience six captivating bamboo-crafted bird sculptures, each standing up to a staggering 30 feet tall, set within the lush landscapes of Pinecrest Gardens.
‘Avian Oasis’ is a transformative blend of art, history, and nature. This exhibition marks a monumental moment in Pinecrest Gardens’ 20-year history as we invite guests to connect deeply with each avian story,” said Cristina Blanco, executive director of Pinecrest Gardens.
Crafted by the world-renowned The Myth Makers, Donna Dodson & Andy Moerlein, every piece in the ‘Avian Oasis’ narrates a story, from a 15-foot-tall Macaw at the entrance honoring the historic Parrot Jungle and its founder Franz Scherr, the majestic 30-foot-tall Sandhill Crane outside the main entrance commemorating the late Sidney Poitier, to a 10-foot-tall Cockatoo that revives memories of Pinky, the high-wire cycling bird symbolizing the original Parrot Jungle.
Additionally, a playful 25-foot-tall Peacock inspired by Julia DeForest Tuttle, the “Mother of Miami,” and a 25-foot-tall Eastern Screech Owl nestled within the Banyan Grove pays respect to the indigenous peoples while a 15-foot-tall Painted Bunting near the Inspiration Center celebrates Maurice A. Ferré, the revered modern-day Father of Miami. Each bird sculpture unveils a rich tapestry of Miami’s past, ensuring the garden teems with tales and history.
“We’ve always been fascinated by the intertwining of myth and nature. ‘Avian Oasis’ represents the heartbeats of Miami’s storied past, each bird singing tales of legends and heroes,” said Dodson and Moerlein.
The attention to detail is impeccable. Sculptures are primarily made from bamboo, which is sourced from members of the American Bamboo Society. The Myth Makers enhance each sculpture with whimsical elements and splashes of color using repurposed and recycled materials.
Beyond mere observation, the ‘Avian Oasis’ is an interactive experience. Children can wander through the Peacock’s tail maze or participate in a scavenger hunt, while adults find solace under the sculptures, creating lasting memories.
Event planners can elevate their occasions with Pinecrest Gardens’ enchanting backdrop. The ‘Avian Oasis’ sculptures add magic to any event, from holiday parties and weddings to corporate functions.
For Dodson and Moerlein, ‘Avian Oasis’ is a continuation of their passion. With over 50 projects in 13 years, spanning 18 states and countries like Switzerland, Vietnam and Taiwan, their work has captured imaginations and received both national awards and state recognitions. To create the sculptures for this project, the artists worked in residence at Gardenship, a unique arts incubator in Newark, NJ.
“Each bird tells a story, and Pinecrest Gardens is the perfect stage. We invite everyone to let their imaginations soar with these beautiful Avian Avatars,” Blanco added.
Tickets and costs for the ‘Avian Oasis’ exhibit at Pinecrest Gardens will be available soon. For updates, follow Pinecrest Gardens on social media or visit www.pinecrestgardens.org/mythmakers.
ABOUT PINECREST GARDENS
Pinecrest Gardens, with its lush landscapes, beautiful botanic gardens and buzzing community scene, welcomes over 150,000 local and international visitors each year. Formerly the beloved Parrot Jungle, the Village of Pinecrest acquired this South Florida gem in 2002, securing its place on the National Register of Historic Places in 2011. Today, Pinecrest Gardens provides a multifaceted venue for the arts, education, and environmental conservation. Beyond its rich history, it serves as both an entertainment destination and a picturesque backdrop for special occasions, spanning from weddings and bridal showers to corporate events. Committed to inclusivity, Pinecrest Gardens extends a warm invitation to visitors everywhere, offering a rich tapestry of events, workshops, and enlightening experiences designed to enthrall and educate.
Whether it’s attending a live concert in the 530-seat amphitheater, wandering through 14 acres of botanical wonders punctuated by native wetlands, hardwood hammocks, and a serene cypress slough, playing on the new inclusive, ADA-accessible playground or participating in an art-centric festival or horticultural tour, there’s always something to discover. Stay connected by following Pinecrest Gardens on social media or visit www.pinecrestgardens.org.
ABOUT THE MYTH MAKERS
The collaboration between Dodson and Moerlein is born from a mutual love of the wild. Dodson takes inspiration from the mysterious nature of birds that spark her imagination. Moerlein takes inspiration from events in the natural world that strike a narrative chord in the artist.
Although monumental in scale, their ephemeral works are temporary in nature. Made from natural materials, they are site-specific and respond to their local audience. Meaning to only last three to five years, they appear, fade, and disappear, adding a chapter to the life stories in their communities. The Myth Makers’ work has won national awards and state recognition(s) and has been recently featured in American Public Garden Magazine, Basketry Magazine and Sculpture Magazine.
Dodson is a graduate of Wellesley College (BA) and is currently a Resident Scholar at the Brandeis University Women’s Studies Research Center and a Visual Art Fellow at the St. Botolph Club in Boston. Moerlein is a graduate of Dartmouth College (BA) and Cornell University (MFA), a lifelong educator and arts activist. Visit www.themythmakers.org for more information.
HARBORWALK ARTISTS IN RESIDENCE: THE MYTH MAKERS, DONNA DODSON & ANDY MOERLEIN
Beacon, a 20’ tall bamboo sculpture by The Myth Makers, Donna Dodson & Andy Moerlein is a monumental public art project that is inspired by the Osprey as a tribute to Rachel Carson and her ecological restoration efforts.