The Pawtucket Foundation approached Gail to create a series of four awards for its 7th Annual Awards Celebration. 2010 marked Pawtucket’s first ever Cherry Blossom Festival. Thomas Mann, the Foundations director, felt that the awards should reflect the theme of this event. Gail used the cherry blossom festival as the starting point for her inspiration.
One of the award recipients was very instrumental in the making the cherry blossom festival happen by donating a large portion of the trees for the event. By using the cherry blossom theme the awards served to promote the following month’s event.
How the Awards were created
Gail works with recycled and reclaimed materials, whenever possible. Not only does it reclaim material that would otherwise go by the wayside, it also grounds her work to the place its surrounding context. The frames were constructed from wood that was reclaimed from a mill in Pawtucket and constructed by a local artisan. The branches are made of steel and then finished with a patina to complete the wooden effect.
The petals were cut from Coca Cola cans and then formed to give them the three dimensional qualities and the structure of a petal. All of the petals were individually hand cut and painted making the flowers various sizes and colors. The flowers for each award were painted to slightly differ from the other three in its family. Each piece was made to work alone and as a part of the ensemble. Each petal was hand painted.