Spanish artist Manolo Garcia constructs towering replicas of renaissance-era sculptures, portraits, animals, and other decorative objects from his expansive workshop in Valencia, Spain. Garcia refers to his practice as ‘artistic carpentry’ and by looking at process photos of the studio’s work, that seems like a fair descriptor. Most of the set pieces, monuments, and sculptures built by Garcia begin with strips of wood that are applied to large architectural armature. The objects are usually so large they are first built in pieces and later assembled on-site.
Last March, Garcia participated in the annual Las Fallas (Fire Festival) in Valencia where a series of large artworks are set on fire at night as part of a Burning Man-esque spectacle. To be fair, the Fallas festivals in their current format pre-date the popular Nevada festival by about 44 years, and may have originated as far back as the Middle Ages.
Another year, another Corso Zundert (previously), the legendary parade of giant floats adored with thousands of dahlia flowers that twist through the narrow streets of Zundert, Netherlands. This year 19 teams took inspiration from the work of Vincent van Gogh who was born in Zundert 162 years ago. The towering floats borrow colors, motifs, and imagery from van Gogh’s painting including several interpretations of the artist’s self-portraits.
Started in 1936, the parade celebrates the region’s reputation as a global supplier of dahlia flowers, an area now covering 33 hectares (81 acres) of 600,000 dahlia bulbs in fifty different species. The first Corso Zundert parades were modest in size featuring horse-drawn carts or bicycles covered in flowers, but the event has since grown dramatically. The floats now merge more ambitious aspects of contemporary/urban art with traditional parade floats as part of a friendly annual competition. You can see plenty more photos over on BN DeStem.
Yes, it’s that time of year again for the world’s largest flower parade, Corso Zundert in the Netherlands! Located in the small town of Zundert at the Belgian border, the annual parade features 20 giant floats created by various districts within the city. To encourage a wide breadth of creativity the parade never has a theme, leaving teams free to design whatever they want as long as the floats fit the within 20 x 10 meters and are completely adorned with dahlia flowers.
It’s the biggest time of year for the small town of Zundert in the Netherlands. Twenty gigantic floats were paraded through the city as part of Corso Zundert (previously), an annual flower parade that sees teams of designers and artisans compete to build the most original sculpture covered almost completely with dahlia flowers.
Several floats appearing in Corso Zundert this year contained moving parts, including the winner, Crazy Gold, that had some 53 moving components. You can see a ranking of this years competitors over on Croso Zundert, videos on YouTube, and many more photos courtesy Omroep Brabant.
Aside from being consistently ranked as one of the best countries to live in on Earth, file this as reason #4,123 to stop by the Netherlands: Bloemencorso, the annual parade of flowers in Zundert. That’s right, every float here is made from natural flowers, specifically dahlias. From twisting architectural structures the size of houses to bizarre animatronic birds and puppets, and even animals made from swooping gestures reminiscent of graffiti, Bloemencorso seems to have a little bit of everything. Despite the relatively small nature of Zundert (a small town north east of Belgium with a population of about 20,000) the variety of and ingenuity of these sculptures seems to know no bounds. I’ve embedded an hour-long video of the entire parade from 2012 above, it’s worth skipping around a bit to see everything, and you can see more videos on the event website and in this gallery. Want to see it in person? You’ll need to wait until next year, the next event happens September 1 and 2 of 2013. (thnx, kjeld!)