Gourdaments Take Manhattan
New York, NY—A collection of adventuresome gourd critters have left farm and field to head for the bright lights of New York City. Leaving behind their better-known cousins, zucchini and butternut, the hard-shelled varieties will make an encore appearance at the New York International Gift Fair on August 13-18 at the Jacob Javits Center.
“I can’t imagine what got into them,” award-winning artist Devon Cameron remarked when asked about her runaway gourds. “Once I gave them eyes and ears there was no holding them back. I wish them luck as they follow their dreams of fame and fortune, but they are sorely missed here. Our Gourdaments never failed to bring a smile, a chuckle, an occasional guffaw.”
Gourdaments are not the only headline-grabbing gourds. Gourdmania is sweeping the nation. Farmers who once grew fruits and vegetables are now turning to the popular crop of ever-lasting, hard-shelled gourds to fuel the demand for gourd bowls, hats, vases, umbrella stands, and, now, pets. Though enjoying fame in our own time, these wood-like gourds have been inspiring artists of diverse cultures for millennia.
“Many artists view gourds as ‘nature’s canvas’ or ‘nature’s pottery,” according to Devon. “I also consider gourds to be an expression of nature’s whimsy. Add ears and tails, gobblers and combs, a splash of fancy, and—voila!—a magical critter emerges. Mother Nature makes a wonderful and exciting co-partner. A high-tech world filled with plastic gadgets and glaring computer monitors make it difficult to resist her wholesome allure.”
Devon’s popular designs are also alluring. “My own past and present are revealed as each creation takes form,” she explains. “My background in Music Therapy gives my cats a musical twist, my experience in education reminds me that every gourd is unique and what works for one may not work for another; raising two young children prompts me to see the lighter side of life and to be free in thought and creative style. My hope for the future is that my creations will continue to lift the spirit and tease a smile from everyone who enjoys them.”
Devon’s award winning creations have been featured at the American Crafts Festival at Lincoln Center Festival and Arts Festival at Rockefeller Center, and their rebellious spirits have actually taken them well beyond the Big Apple to over two hundred fine gift shops across America and Canada.
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