ART IN THE GARDEN
Presented by Margaret Joplin
First off…disclaimer: I am not an expert on Art in Gardens! I am a landscape architect and an art enthusiast who loves to combine these worlds.
In 1973 I left Oklahoma City to enter Prescott College at age 18. I loaded my VW and hit the road. After the first year, I felt directionless and did not want to return. I just wanted to stay in Prescott. The next good idea I came up with was to enter Yavapai College part-time taking random art classes. My father told me to get a job if I was to stay.
I found a job at a new retail garden center, The Greenery Nursery. The owners were Ken Asplund and Ted Rose. I was their first employee starting as labor progressing to manager. Ken opened the world of plants to me; he was a natural teacher. Ted taught me the business end.
After 5 years at the nursery, I was 25 years old and questioned my direction. I wanted to stay in a plant field and found Landscape Architecture. For me, it had everything: design, plants, art, community, natural environments. In 1981, I moved to Tucson to enter the undergraduate program at the UA. I completed the 5-year program in 4 years with my random Yavapai College classes. I had the honor of 4 semesters with Warren Jones. I loved my studies. My senior project was “Urban Plazas in Arid Climates.” I thought I would get my registration and then move to a large urban center, working in a large firm.
After graduation, I worked in land development firms to accrue work experience and take my registration exams. During that time, I attended a workshop presented by the Tucson/Pima Arts Council on Art in Transportation. Artist, Vicki Scuri, used tire treads in concrete form-liners to transform an unwanted new parking garage in a neighborhood and artist, Stan Edminster, transformed old bridges in Baltimore by painting them to match their context. That day changed my life, it was the moment I knew what I wanted to do: incorporate art into design. That was the beginning.
By 1990 I had my registration and established Design Collaborations. The name, Design Collaborations, was selected to represent my core design philosophy. I believe that excellent design is produced through collaboration and participation, and I strive to carry that to all the different types of work I do. Over time there have been many iterations of my firm with public art always being a component.
In 2012, I got a public art project with cast glass, having never done it. That is when my husband, Michael, with glass experience, joined me to create this vision. It is now we/ours.
Today, Design Collaborations is an innovative design firm creating hand-made glass works, public art and landscape architecture located in Tucson, Arizona. I am so glad I never left! Please look at our website www.designcollaborations.com to see the range of our work.
With all that being said, my presentation explores: definitions of art and gardens; what came first: art or garden; how I got here; types of art in gardens, what I have seen, what I have learned and what I thought I understood, and finally my/our work.
I will bring a hanging piece of glass on ¼” wire rope as a raffle gift.
If you have been fully vaccinated for Covid-19 you are welcome to come and join us for this excellent in person presentation (masks will be required by all). This meeting will also be a Zoom program and will be an important educational and informational event you must see. Also, if using Zoom, be sure to log in to win a $25.00 gift certificate from TCSS or choose a copy of the new 3rd edition of the Field Guide to Cacti & Other Succulents of Arizona. Plant give-a-ways will also be happening at the in person meeting as well. When leaving the live in person meeting, everyone can get a free plant offered to you by the TCSS.
Join us on Zoom https://bit.ly/tcssmm