Hello from BHF

This is a brand spankin new blog about Art Loves Farms/Art Loves Food, a small project created by Marian Wertalka, Rachel Pikarsky, and Margie Pikarsky, based on a proposal by Marian and Nerissa Street. Our goal is to educate young local art students about eating, buying, and supporting local food and the farmers who grow it.

Basically, we collect applications from students interested in attending the artist residency, located at Bee Heaven Farm. The few selected students then come to the farm to live and work for three to four days. During this time, they will eat wonderful food, visit interesting places in the local agriculture scene, and create provocative artwork inspired by their time on the farm.

The first session of Art Loves Farms was May 22-25, 2009, after Marian approached Rachel about rewriting a grant proposal that Nerissa and Marian had written. Rachel ran with the idea, created and reviewed all the applications, and scheduled all the tours and events. Margaret Pikarsky, head of Bee Heaven Farm, bought food for the participants and drove them to the tour locations.

The tour schedule consisted of three local agriculture based places:

The Fruit and Spice Park–for a tour and a taste of strange and wonderful plants and fruits. This was meant to show a broad range of all the diverse plants and crops that could be grown in South Florida.

Possum Trot Nursery–to show an actual local farmer’s take on what is reasonable to grow. He also grows a vast array of plants that the students may recognize from their trip to The Fruit and Spice Park, so it is an interesting thing to see the plants actually put into action. Also, Robert Barnum, the owner, is a chef and he prepared a wonderful lunch for the students.

Robert Is Here–a local fruit and vegetable stand where students can see the crops they’ve seen throughout the day being packaged and sold. Also, this is a chance for them to buy a delicious world renowned milkshake made from local fruits.

After this the students return to the farm to relax and create art. The media is not limited to paint and students are encouraged to try something new, like creative writing, music writing, sculpture, or even performance art.

Here are a few pictures from our last session in which seven students participated:

Elise Fernandez: made a sculpture with grape twigs and a piece of wood she carved

Julian Rendon: worked on a piece that was meant to bridge his current life to his future life

Jessica Howard: painted a portrait of the resident horse, Bali, on a piece of cardboard she found on the farm

Jacob Dakar: took pictures of chickens meant to glorify and showcase their prehistoric image

Adrian Pinagel: did oil paintings of the night sky through foilage

Victoria Martinotti: did small oil paintings of a select area of the farm throughout the day focusing on the change of light–She also worked on a painting of a hand

Scott Zenteno: did a series of paintings of tractors

Here are some pictures! :D

~ by rachelsky on October 3, 2009.

2 Responses to “Hello from BHF”

  1. what a wonderful program!!! i am a local artist and was wondering if you do anything for adults??? would love to get more info about how students are selected, im also a mother of 4. thanks for all you guys do!!

    • Thank you so much! Your artwork is stunning! At the moment we’re only doing art students in high school. I’m not completely sure how big this is going to get and perhaps at some point we will include an adult program. For now though, we’re sticking with students.
      We have an application process where students submit a short paragraph about what they’re planning to accomplish or make while on the farm. They also submit a few images of the work they have made within the last year.
      If you’d like to help us, there is a possibility that we will be needing a guest artist. If you’re willing, that would be awesome and we’d all like to talk to you about it. Our next session will be in December and at the moment, we have a guest artist lined up, but if that doesn’t work and you’d like to spend an hour or two with a small group of students, teaching them a few things or just sparking up ideas, that would be great. Either way, it would be delightful to have you join us as a guest artist for one of the sessions!
      Thank you so much
      Rachel Pikarsky

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