In a first for Gardens by the Bay, the works of special needs artists are incorporated into the design of a floral display

The new Hydrangea Holidays floral display in Flower Dome will also feature a silent auction of these artworks to generate income for the artists from JOURNEY by TOUCH Community Services

Hydrangea Holidays floral displayPhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

The new Hydrangea Holidays (绣球花假期) floral display in Gardens by the Bay’s Flower Dome, which opens today, features 50 artworks by 27 intellectually disabled artists from JOURNEY by TOUCH Community Services woven into the landscape. It is the first time the Gardens is collaborating with special needs artists for the design of a floral display.

Gardens by the Bay Hydrangea Holidays Floral DisplayPhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

Hydrangea Holidays is also the first time Gardens by the Bay is making hydrangeas the theme of a floral display. There are over 20 varieties of hydrangeas in shades that are close to the colours of the Dutch flag – red, white and blue – planted against a backdrop inspired by the traditional Dutch countryside in summer. There are Dutch icons like a windmill, canal, Amsterdam townhouses, and a lighthouse inspired by the red-and-white West Schouwen, which is one of the largest and tallest lighthouses in the Netherlands.

Hydrangea Holidays Floral Display Flower DomePhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

The artworks feature hydrangeas and other blooms, and are also inspired by both the Dutch landscape and Gardens by the Bay.

Assoc Prof Dr Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of National Development launched the floral display today, together with Ambassador of the Netherlands to Singapore and Brunei Her Excellency Margriet Vonno, and Chief Executive Officer of TOUCH Community Services James Tan. Hydrangea Holidays will run until August 14.

Hydrangea Holidays Floral Display in Gardens by the BayPhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

Artworks available for sale via silent auction

TOUCH Community Services is one of the beneficiaries of Gardens by the Bay’s Gift of Gardens community outreach initiative, which provides the underprivileged community complimentary access to Flower Dome and Cloud Forest.

Artwork by special needs artists from JOURNEY by TOUCH Community ServicesPhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

In April this year, Her Excellency Margriet Vonno and the Gardens by the Bay team visited the TOUCH Centre of Independent Living (TCIL), where Her Excellency conducted a sharing session with the special needs artists. The artists learnt about hydrangeas and other cultural icons of the Netherlands, and these newfound inspirations were channelled into their artworks.

One of these artists is Chen Zhiyu. To him, hydrangea flowers are colourful, and the petals are exquisite. He loved the purple hydrangeas that were shown to him during the sharing session at TCIL so much that he featured them in his painting along with Dutch icons like the lighthouse.

All 50 artworks are available for sale in a silent auction. Visitors who are keen to purchase the artworks can scan the corresponding QR codes next to each artwork to place a bid. Proceeds from the silent auction will go to TOUCH and the artists, enabling them to be more self-reliant and to live in dignity. Bidding closes on 14 August and successful bidders will be contacted by TOUCH Community Services.

Hydrangea Holidays Gardens by the Bay Flower DomePhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

Senior Director of Horticultural Operations at Gardens by the Bay Gary Chua said, “Gardens by the Bay is honoured to provide a platform for these special needs artists to showcase their talent. Their colourful artworks are a unique depiction of hydrangeas and the Netherlands, and complement Hydrangea Holidays beautifully. We hope to leverage on the popularity of Flower Dome’s floral displays to garner more visibility for these artists, and in turn generate more income for them via the silent auction. This is also a good opportunity to bring together the special needs community and the general public.”

Chief Executive Officer of TOUCH Community Services James Tan said, “At TOUCH, we believe in empowerment – to provide every client with opportunities to contribute based on their individual abilities and to build their independence. We are honoured to be partnering with Gardens by the Bay to showcase the talents of people with intellectual disabilities alongside the beautiful floral display. We hope the exhibition will allow more to see the potential of every individual to contribute to society and understand the importance of support as a community.”

Hydrangea Holidays Gardens by the BayPhoto credit: Gardens by the Bay

Hydrangea Holidays is supported by Bloomberg, and held in partnership with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Singapore and JOURNEY by TOUCH Community Services. It is the fifth of eight full-scale floral displays that Gardens by the Bay is bringing back to Flower Dome in the year of its tenth anniversary.

Date: 24 June to 14 August 2022
Time: 9am to 9pm
Location: Flower Dome
Admission: Charges to Flower Dome applies

You can get tickets online via Klook.

For more details on Hydrangea Holidays as well as the silent auction, visit here.

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