Flower infused resin and blackened steel
76 x 190 x 190 cm
Flora Collection derives from Rusak’s family history and is composed of two main groups of sculptural works: Flora Temporaria is made of visible flowers, petals and leaves in the possible matte or polished finishes in black, rust or green, while Flora Perma is mixing visible cross sections of petals and stems in matte and polished finishes in black, rust or white. As Rusak explains: “My grandfather’s flower factory closed just a year before I was born, so I wasn’t exposed to this part of my heritage as a child. It was only when I began exploring the idea of aging materials that I put two and two together. Closing the narrative circle of 20 years, I went back and investigated this part of my family history: the flower-growing industry. In many ways this approach is similar to what my grandfather was accomplishing; cross-pollinating different strains of flowers. For both of us, flowers represented a material palette from which to test-out different processes. My first impulse was to generate a living composite and at same time, suspend the lifespan of flowers, that in normal circumstances, quickly decays. Working closely with a scientist, I developed a bacteria that fortified the natural elements before submerging them in resin slabs. Overtime, that same bacteria would eat away the flower, leaving ghostly voids behind. Whereas Perma is my research, Flora is the result”.