Medellín, Colombia, July 26 (EFE).- Three huge parrots enhance a vibrant floral tapestry meticulously crafted with over 200,000 flowers to create a magical atmosphere as a prelude to the Feria de las Flores (Flower Festival), scheduled to take place from July 28 to August 7, and expected to draw some 50,000 visitors to the Colombian city of Medellín.
From the exotic tails of these birds, embracing the city during the festivities, the 1,000 square-meter tapestry unfolds gracefully in the main square of the Santafé shopping center, showcasing red, pink, purple, and white petunias, alongside orange and yellow marigolds, wedelias, and lemon-colored batatillas.
The three-dimensional sculpture was unveiled, featuring three parrots measuring fourteen, nine, and eight meters in height, under the message “Las flores abrigan tu corazón” (Flowers warm your heart). The artwork draws inspiration from Colombia, a country that has recently solidified its position as the world’s most biodiverse region for bird species, boasting a record of 1,532 distinct avian species.
“We wanted to bring back an imposing bird, just like in 2017 with the 12-meter-tall peacock. We are going to surprise all our visitors, especially tourists, with a 3D work of art, which was more challenging this year because we had three birds,” said María Fernanda Bertel, the general manager of the shopping center, in an interview with Agencia EFE. She explained that they chose parrots because they sought “something highly striking and representative of Colombia.”
SYMBOLISM OF WINGS
For the 12th edition of the emblematic tapestry, now a major attraction of the Feria de las Flores, expected to generate $30 million in revenue this year, the aim was to create a space that evokes, through the symbolism of wings, “the beautiful feeling of being embraced” as a tribute to those beings who “care for us, accompany us, and protect us with love.”
After two years of planning, the 25,500 plants arrived from the towns of Santa Elena and Rionegro and were put together by 100 people, including those responsible for assembling the majestic birds. The avian sculptures were crafted from a metal and foam structure, covered with soft materials to simulate feathers.
In previous editions, the tapestry also captivated visitors with two large hummingbirds and colorful butterflies suspended above the fabric, which has come to life this year to welcome “magical stories,” such as marriage proposals.
A CHARITABLE TAPESTRY
Once the exhibition concludes, the shopping center, expecting to attract around 2.5 million visitors with its birds and flowers, will allow the public to purchase a piece of the tapestry for a symbolic amount, aiming to raise funds for the “Barriguitas Llenas” (Full Little Bellies) program of the Foundation for Child Care (FAN), which provides assistance to children to prevent malnutrition.
“From the beginning, the decision was made to donate the tapestry to the Foundation, a gift filled with love. This is a tapestry with a heart, and we are also leaving a legacy in the lives of all these children,” explained the general manager.
Through this initiative, Santafé, in addition to promoting child protection alongside the Foundation, has impacted the lives of over 10,000 children and adolescents over the past 12 years, providing them with nutritional support during school breaks.
Among the activities scheduled during the festival around this visual and olfactory experience is the opening of the “Sanalejito” craft market, taking place from July 28 to August 7. More than 60 entrepreneurs will offer traditional products with typical flavors from the region. EFE