The wildflower sculptures at Callaway Gardens reveal rare beauty. This unique collection is on permanent display at the Virginia Hand Welcome Center. Visitors to the welcome center are captivated by these wildflower sculptures. One is easily drawn into the small, delicate world of each plant. I have discovered some of these native wildflowers growing around my Columbus home.
The wildflower sculptures were created by Trailer McQuilkin from Ocean Springs, Mississippi. He is highly skilled in his craft. These sculptures would be at home in any world-class natural history museum. Soft copper sheet is used to produce the veined petals and leaves of each wildflower plant. The artist snips, incises, and solders the copper sheet. Copper sheet is a soft and malleable material. This allows the artist to press vein patterns and to add gentle curves. The botanical detail equals that of a master jeweler! I delight in the tiny parts of each flower head. The curly petal textures of the Barbara’s Buttons plant is splendid!
The sculpture exhibit includes a glimpse into the artist’s studio. One can examine the copper tools, paints, and other materials used in his sculptures. People are naturally curious about the ways in which artists create works of art. Being able to see a partially completed wildflower adds a wonderful hands on touch to the exhibit. This sculpture collection is a marvelous way to explore native wildflowers of Georgia. One does not have to hunt for these rare beauties at Callaway!
The Rare and Endangered Wildflowers of Georgia can be viewed in the Virginia Hand Welcome Center at Callaway Gardens.