What happens when fine art meets floral design? Bouquets to Art at the de Young is a floral extravaganza with botanical creations that wow year after year. Diebenkorn in dahlias? Bierstadt in branches? Or maybe Rivera in roses? Every year and every arrangement is different. Read on for our tips for navigating this popular annual event with your little perennials.  

bouquets_de_art_de_youngPhoto: May Wong via Flickr

Wild and Wonderful
Hundreds of local florists, garden clubs, and floral-students create botanic works that echo the fine art of the de Young museum. Each artists or organization is assigned a work of art in advance, and months of preparation go into the perfect design. Sometimes literal (gowns created out of tiny blossoms) and sometimes figurative. the entire museum comes alive with the color and smell of fresh flowers.

bouquets_de_arts_de_youngPhoto: May Wong via Flickr

The fragrant displays are throughout the museum. You’ll notice them upon entry. Wander through the many different galleries to see how the florists have used their medium to interpret the works of art. Bring a small sketch pad and a crayon or two and let the kids do some interpretative work of their own.

BTA 2006  2Photo courtesy Fine Arts Museum of SF 

Throughout the week, there will be floral design demos, catered luncheons, and for families, two days that offer hands-on activities: Sat., April 18 and Sun., April 19, from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kids will make original paper flower arrangements inspired by the floral displays throughout the museum. Recommended for kids ages 4-12. For families with kids 3 and under, if possible try for a weekday visit when the crowds are thinner. Early mornings and late afternoons are usually the least crowded in general.

bouquets_de_arts_de_youngPhoto: May Wong via Flickr

Good to Know
The cafe offers plenty of kid-friendly fare, but the lines can be long. Send a recon person ahead to get in line and order while you take the kids into the garden to play. The garden also makes a nice spot for nursing moms, as does the far corner of the African Art exhibit on the second floor. It’s dimly lit and there’s a bench. There are infant changing stations in all restrooms. Strollers are not allowed in the museum on this day. You can check them downstairs next to coat check.

bouquets to art de young museum sfPhoto: Courtesy of the author

April 14-19, 2015
9:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m.
Special members only viewing hours, Wed., 6 p.m.

$22/adults; $12/child 13-17; children 12 and under are free.

Members are free. Kids workshops are free; floral design demos are $40 (includes admission to the museum); luncheons are $70/person.

de Young Museum
Golden Gate Park
50 Hagiwara Dr.
San Francisco, Ca 94118
For info about Bouquets to Art: 415-750-3504 

Getting There
On Saturday, John F.Kennedy Dr. is closed from 8th Ave. to Transverse Dr. You can access the Music Concourse Garage from both entrances, but there will be limited street parking. On Sunday, JFK Drive will be closed from Kezar to 8th. (You can still access the garage from both entrances). Public transit lines include: 44, 5, N Judah, and the 71. There is also a free shuttle in the park. which runs 9 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sat. & Sun.

What’s your favorite part of Bouquets to Art? Share your photos with us on Instagram #rockedtheweekend. 

–Amber Guetebier