Cherry Blossom Sculptures

This year, the National Cherry Blossom Festival decided to not have a parade and street festival, which typically happen on the last day of the 2-week celebration. Instead, the festival asked artists to create designs for 26 cherry blossom sculptures, and these were placed around the Washington, DC area.

My two daughters and I had fun tracking down some of the sculptures. The festival provides a helpful map to find them.

Below are the sculptures we saw. Click on each photo to jump to that sculpture’s page on the festival’s website, which tells more about the sculpture and artist.

Sculpture decorated with heart shapes and swirls.
“Celebration” by Sandra Pérez-Ramos
Sculpture decorated with two women sitting in a tree, with many birds also on the tree. Done in a folk art style.
“Cherry Garden” by Rashin Kheiriyeh
Sculpture decorated with picnic blanket and basket of bread, wine, and fruit.
“Cherry Blossom Picnic” by Rachael Bohlander
Sculpture decorated with the word HOPE written in different styles, along the lines of graffiti
“HOPE” by Aaron Feinstein
Sculpture decorated with a grid map of Washington DC
“Community Grid” by My Ly & Jaclyn Stallard

Cherry Blossoms

I live in Maryland, and I love when spring arrives. Warmer days, and colorful flowers pop up, as if wanting to show off what they can do after the Christmas lights had their time to shine. Crocus, daffodils, tulips, hyacinth, azaleas. Lots of azalea bushes around here.

Most popular are the cherry blossoms, as they have their own festival in Washington, DC. Typically a two-week celebration with kite flying, parade, street fair, and more. Locals and tourists stroll around the Tidal Basin, ringed by the beautiful trees.

This year, however, the festival will be different due to Covid-19, in trying to avoid large gatherings. Artists painted 26 cherry blossom sculptures, and these have been placed around the DC area. If you’d like to go on a Blossom Hunt, there’s a handy map for the sculptures’ locations at the Art in Bloom page. Also, residents are encouraged to decorate the front of their properties, so we can embark on Petal Porch Parades. It’s a creative solution to doing things differently during Covid, as they did in New Orleans and elsewhere for Mardi Gras, turning it into “Yardi Gras.”

But if you don’t live in the area, here are some photos I took of visits to the Tidal Basin in the past. Cherry blossoms are found in other spots, yet this popular because of the concentration of the trees there.

Click on the photos to see larger versions. The last one, on the bottom right, shows petals that the wind blew off the trees and collected on the ground near a drain. The scene made for a neat way to see the petals differently. In this askew way, the petals look like pink snow or rain about to wash into underground pipes.