Art Event 10

AMara Weber


During my visit to Niki de Saint Phalle’s Queen Califia’s Garden, I was able to see the magnitude and beauty of her pieces up close. The garden had multiple sculptures all of which were enormous. De Saint Phalle was known for her large colorful sculptures and she enjoyed the idea of her pieces in nature. There were a couple of very tall totem poles with animalistic features at the top of each one which were very colorful and curvy shaped. Throughout the garden, mirrors were a constant theme causing a consistent vision of oneself. The mosaic motif of every single piece created texture. On some of the pieces, brown and gray pieces of rocks created a san texture from afar. Phalle incorporates some trees into her sculptures in order to incorporate nature with her sculptures. During the daytime, the sculptures glistened in the sun considering Phalle’s pieces include a lot of reflective glass works.

            I appreciated the mirror idea. I believe Phalle wanted to make sure each visitor saw themselves laughing, smiling, or playing. The huge scale and flaming color in her pieces make people smile and laugh at how almost ridiculous but beautiful her pieces are. The environment was a little confusing because she had these large colorful statues in a dark green and brown landscape. There were other viewers present which made me feel like the space was very open. Open to anyone, the sculptures were vulnerable. It was a scary feeling to think anyone can come in but that’s also what made it so amazing. Anyone can see Phalle’s unique works for free. Free doesn’t happen often. I think Phalle wanted to create a joyful and open environment for people of all ages to come and enjoy her works. Her pieces also inspired creativity to her viewers. All in all, she created interpretative, colorful, large, and joyous sculptures.  

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