There’s a chance you were roaming about the grounds during the week of May 6 and stumbled upon—what seemed to be— a lovely blanket of flowers covering the fountain display just outside Building D.
You may have been like others, stopping in the middle of the path to snap a few pictures or pause and stare for a moment. Whatever reaction you exhibited, it was just as Nari Lee intended.
Nari, originally from Korea, just completed her first semester at Brookhaven College. Having already received a bachelor’s degree in psychology in Korea, she opted for a change of scenery. She researched art schools in the U.S. and decided the Brookhaven College School of the Arts was for her.
“I’ve heard that Brookhaven is very popular with art students who are interested in the system and curriculum,” she said. “In Korea, artists are not popular. Art education is much better here.”
Nari, along with her classmates in Natalie Macellaio’s 3D design class, created art for display across campus as a final project. The objective was to create a piece that interacted with the surrounding environment using one main material.
The class also was asked to think about the original function of the area where they would be displaying their project. Since Nari decided to utilize the fountain, she had to come up with ways to enhance it.
“I thought, ‘What if I make the fountain cooler?’ I wanted it to look cool while feeling cool,” she said. “Students do not stay in this area for a long time. I had to give a strong impression because the environment is dull.”
The color red came to Nari’s mind first. She thought red seemed to be vibrant enough to give the strong first impression she wanted. Considering the color, as well as the water element from the fountain, Nari decided flowers would be her one main material.
“Flowers are romantic, and every girl desires to bathe in roses. And I thought, ‘What if I had flowers coming out from the fountain?’” she said.
Nari’s final project, “Fountain Flowers,” consisted of red, pink and white silk flowers glued to a 13 by five sheet of sequins that she had hand-sewed herself. The aim was to have the sequins reflect the fountain water from below.
She organized the flowers from light to dark, top to bottom. The deepest, reddest flowers touched the water in the fountain pool, unintentionally dying it red but adding an even more striking effect.
Her class was given just one week to finish their projects, which meant long hours for Nari. Having no experience in sewing, she worked hard and fast and not without painful fingers at the end of the day.
Nari’s long-term goals are to transfer to a four-year university outside of Texas to pursue another bachelor’s degree and to become an artist.