Cherry blossom season may be over, but you can still enjoy them in sculpture form across the D.C. area. Part of the National Cherry Blossom Festival’s “Art in Bloom” program, these giant cherry blossom sculptures, on display until May 31, were painted by 25 local and national artists, including six Montgomery County residents: Ameena Fareeda, Jesse Kirsch, Cory Oberndorfer, Peijisan Art, Aaron Feinstein and Sandra Perez-Ramos.
The sculptures, installed across Washington, D.C., and in Maryland’s National Harbor and Virginia’s Aurora Highlands and National Landing neighborhoods, reflect each artist’s personal style. Decorated with paint, collage, silver leaf, graffiti and watercolor, they were inspired by everything from wood press lettering to COVID-19 to Japanese culture.
Artist Cory Oberndorfer is a native of Rockville whose work has been featured in galleries and art centers across the country. His art is often focused nostalgia, American pop culture and the joy of life’s simple pleasures. For his sculpture, “Ice Flavors,” Oberndorfer dipped his petals in shades inspired by ice pop flavors.
See this sculpture at Wisconsin Ave. & Reservoir Road NW (Book Hill).
Originally from Rockville, Aaron Feinstein has spent his life working in Washington, D.C., both as an artist and a child therapist in public schools. “HOPE” is a graffiti-inspired montage that speaks to the uncertainty and collective angst of our time. Feinstein chose the word “hope” for its simple and flexible application that allows viewers to put it into any context they want.
See this sculpture at 14th & Crittenden Streets NW.
Based in Silver Spring, Ameena Fareeda earned an MFA in illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art and currently works as a freelance illustrator and designer. Her sculpture, “Renewal Blossom,” was sponsored by The Embassy of Japan to celebrate the friendship between Japan and America on the 10th anniversary of The Great East Japan Earthquake. The design was inspired by traditional floral motifs that symbolize renewal and resilience and represents the obstacles Japan has overcome with the support from the U.S.
Award-winning graphic designer Jesse Kirsch of Takoma Park is the owner and creative director of No Plan Press, a boutique letterpress and design studio. He enjoys exploring everyday subjects using geometry, color and typography “ABCDC” was inspired by antique wood type and the alphabetized streets of DC and features a hidden message of hope for the future.
See this sculpture at 4200 Connecticut Ave. NW (UDC).
In addition to creating digital art, murals and sculptures, Peijisan Art of Gaithersburg helps manage a local art gallery and works with non-profit art organizations. She studied the Japanese language and culture for years and is often inspired by Japanese aesthetic. “Chiyogami Compilation,” also sponsored by The Embassy of Japan, uses colorful collage to symbolize the blending of traditional and modern techniques as well as the blending of the U.S. and Japanese cultures into one partnership.
Sandra Perez-Ramos is a Puerto Rican artist based in Silver Spring and the co-founder of The Latino Art League of Greater Washington DC. Inspired by nature, folk arts, cultural mix and magical thinking, her award-winning work has been exhibited in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. “Celebration” uses vibrant mix of colors and shapes to celebrate new beginnings and creative energy as we head into spring.
See this sculpture at 4th & Butternut Streets NW.
The National Cherry Blossom Festival is hosting a weekly photo contest on social media. Share your photos of the giant cherry blossom sculptures at @CherryBlossFest and tag #ArtInBloom for a chance to win.