Peace and Pulp at Girbaud

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The fourth edition of Marithé François Girbaud's quarterly Construkt series of retail/design projects debuted in New York at Girbaud's SoHo flagship boutique last month, with an artwork oddly titled "The Hanging Gardens of Pulp." Curated by Sebastien Agneessens of Formavision and produced by Reflex Advertising, the work is a site-specific installation by British artist Zoe Bradley, commissioned by Girbaud. Its garden theme ties into the company's involvement with Seeds of Peace, a nonprofit "dedicated to empowering young leaders from regions of conflict with the leadership skills required to advance reconciliation and coexistence," as explained at SeedsofPeace.org.

Bradley, a self-described showpiece designer who works mainly in paper, sewed and folded reams of it (provided by global paper company ArjoWiggins) in a feat of macro-origami mastery to create exotic flora throughout the space. To add yet another layer of meaning, this in turn references the vegetation wall, created by botanist/vertical landscape designer Patrick Blanc, which is a permanent feature of the boutique. Bradley also created a limited-edition line of fanciful origami headpieces for sale at the store. But the social statement is intended to take precedence over the fashion statement. Above all, says curator Agneessens, besides the fact that "the live vegetation and the suspended artificial garden will live together in harmony, the exhibition demonstrates that seeds someday bloom into beautiful and powerful plants, as the images of the children of Seeds of Peace will later transform into ambassadors for peace between countries in conflict."
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