There is an 18-by-6-foot-wide Homecoming mum at the Arlington Museum of Art (AMA) through October 19, as part of its exhibition MUMENTOUS: The Upsizing of a Texas Tradition. Designed by Lone Star Floats in Dallas, the mum was built with 300 feet of ribbon, 1250 flower heads, 165 feet of feathered fringe, 50 drink cups, 100 fry containers, and 80 bracelets and key chains. It took 120 hours to build.
The exhibition’s focus is the work of Amy J. Schultz, the AMA’s first artist-in-residence. Schultz is an artist, writer, and award-winning photographer, and has spent the past three years studying mums, from the unique Texas high-school tradition of the homecoming mum-garter exchange. (For more on this odd tradition, see the great photography of Texas’ Nancy Newberry and her series Mum.)
Says Brian White, AMA Executive Director:“Since this is a mostly Lone Star State tradition, I thought why not involve a sponsor who represents Texas and Friday Night Lights? In discussions with Whataburger, we thought ‘Let’s do something as big as Texas’ and the world’s largest Mum idea came about. We knew we had to make it happen! It offers a complimentary, fun feature to Amy’s exhibit.”
MUMENTOUS includes video, photographs, and 94 homecoming mums displayed along a chain link fence, complete with artificial turf. There will be an artist talk by Schultz on October 16, and her installation is up through November 24. The talk is from 6 – 7 pm, and you can RSVP here.