“For this year’s exhibition, we decided to do something different—to go more whimsical and playful but at the same time refined,” Cristina Grajales says of the new exhibition at the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden. The new show opens December 6 to coincide with the host of art and design-related events this month as Art Basel Miami and Design Miami come to town, not to mention the opening of Fairchild’s own Adam R. Rose and Peter R. McQuillan Arts Center.
This time around, Grajales, who has curated the last two Design at Fairchild shows and has a legendary, eponymous gallery of her own in New York, decided on an installation featuring a limited edition collection of 99 of designer Satyendra Pakhalé’s iconic Fish Chairs in a shade dubbed viola—a vivid, intense pink. It’s a shade that stands out from the garden’s stunning eight acre arboretum.
Choosing Pakhalé’s work also meant Grajales could underscore the connections between the Indian designer, the research program of the institution and the culture of South Florida. “There’s a lot of crossover,” notes Grajales.
The show also connects to another one running at the same time, an Art at Fairchild event featuring the glass creations of Dale Chihuly. “We decided to do just one design of the chair and one color to complement the Chihuly,” Grajales explains.
“Every time I go to the gardens, they still take my breath away,” says Grajales. “It’s the most graceful, gracious place. The backdrop is incredible, so whatever you put in front, it’s just rich and enriched by the beauty of the garden. We want everybody to support and experience it and participate the beauty of the place.”