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GardenFest to highlight 'Art in the Garden'


Gardening enthusiasts need to mark their calendars and make plans to attend the 11th Annual GardenFest at The Botanic Garden at Oklahoma State University.

Kim Toscano, host of the popular television program Oklahoma Gardening, said this year's GardenFest will offer something for the gardening enthusiast as well as the art lover. GardenFest will take place Oct. 6 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

"Our theme for GardenFest this year is 'Art in the Garden,' and we'll be celebrating the centuries old relationship between the landscape and art," Toscano said. "Both natural and manmade landscapes have long served as sources of inspiration to artists the world over. Likewise, artists, designers and gardeners have crafted the land in countless ways. We're very excited to invite everyone out to The Botanic Garden at OSU to explore this connection between the landscape and art through hands-on demonstrations and landscape art installations."

Toscano said they are enhancing GardenFest this year with artwork, live music and exhibitors, in addition to garden-themed activities.

"GardenFest has continued to grow over the years and this year is no exception," she said. "Sculptural works by Stillwater artist Morgan Robinson will be on display throughout the gardens. In addition, sculptural installations created by OSU students also will be displayed through the grounds."

This year's keynote speaker will be artist and landscape architect W. Gary Smith. His presentation, "Designing Like an Artist," will begin at 10 a.m. in the Education Building. He combines art and horticulture to explore ecological design and artistic abstraction. Smith has won numerous awards for his work at renowned gardens such as Winterthur Museum and Gardens, The Naples Botanic Garden and Longwood Gardens. Some of his most recent endeavors include designs for the Children's Garden at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and the Discovery Garden at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

Visitors to GardenFest will be able to unleash their own inner creative spirit by participating in garden art demonstrations such as paper making, flower arranging and gourd painting. Guests also will have an opportunity to learn more about the art of bonsai.

These and other educational programs lead by OSU educators, Oklahoma artisans and The Botanic Garden Ambassadors will take place throughout the day.

"There is fun in store for the whole family. Children will delight in hands-on garden and art activities and a garden scavenger hunt," Toscano said.

The Botanic Garden at OSU is located at 3300 West 6th Ave. in Stillwater. Events are free; however, donations are encouraged to help support this educational program. For more information visit The Botanic Garden website at www.botanicgarden.okstate.edu, or contact Stephanie Larimer at 405-744-5404.

Date: 9-24-2012

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