From Brazil to The Bronx: The New York Botanical Garden’s Largest Exhibition Ever

This Saturday The New York Botanical Garden’s largest exhibition opens: Brazilian Modern: The Living Art of Roberto Burle Marx.

Marx was one of the most influential Brazilian modernist artist and landscape architect who produced and left his mark on thousands of gardens and even iconic urban landscapes such as the curved mosaic walkway in Rio de Janiero’s Copacabana Beach.

The Modernist Garden inspired by Roberto Burle Marx

The exhibition includes the large Modernist Garden in one of the front lawn of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory and is inspired by one of Marx’s installations in Sao Paulo, Brazil and various others of his works across Latin America.

When you enter the Modernist Garden you feel as if you stepped through a portal and transported to Brazil or even Puerto Rico where modernist architecture, landscapes, and gardens abound.

You really feel as if you’re in a tropical environment and no longer in The Bronx

The beautiful black and white geometric curvilinear patterns on the concrete paths and open plaza in front of the fountain are a striking contrast to the palm trees, plants, and flowers planted throughout.

Even with the landmark conservatory in the background, you still feel as if you’re no longer in The Bronx or New York City for that matter and this is thanks to Raymond Jungles, FASLA, a landscape architect who’s mentor was Burle Marx, who designed the garden for the exhibition.

As much as you may want to stay outdoors enjoying the Modernist Garden, there’s much more to see.

The Water Garden

Although the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory is under renovations, part of it still remains open and the exhibition continues indoors as well as a Water Garden with the pool containing various tropical water lilies and plants that Burle Marx frequently used.

One of several works of art by Byrke Marx on display at the LuEsther T. Mertz Library

Over in the LuEsther T. Mertz Library, don’t miss out on the Burle Marx’s artwork which was curated from his last 30 years of his life and puts the exhibition into perspective by showing you how modernism seeped into everything he did.

As with each year’s exhibition, there’s a ton of programming throughout its duration for you to take advantage of.

You can create your own “asulejos” or blue tiles on paper

From a parade and dance party inspired by Carnaval to capoeira and interactive samba lessons and even stuff just for kids.

And for adults you have Brazilian Modern After Hours where you can unwind in the garden with a few cocktails while relaxing to the sounds and beat of Brazil.

Don’t forget to stop by the Merenda, the Brazilian inspired food truck where you can get “churrasco” skewers of chicken, beef or cheese and wash it down with a nice smoothie.

Brazilian Modern: The Living Art of Roberto Burle Marx opens June 8 and runs until September 29, 2019 so you have plenty of time to enjoy this delightful and unique exhibition in the heart of The Bronx at the New York Botanical Garden.

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Ed García Conde

Ed García Conde is a life-long Bronxite who spends his time documenting the people, places, and things that make the borough a special place in the hopes of dispelling the negative stereotypes associated with The Bronx. His writings are often cited by mainstream media and is often consulted for his expertise on the borough's rich history.