The Me Too movement was coined by Bronx, N.Y.-based activist Tarana Burke in 2006, and went viral through the use of the hashtag #MeToo in 2017 when actress Alyssa Milano tweeted to support victims of sexual assault who spoke up against Harvey Weinstein. Now, in 2022, inspired by the Me Too movement—and in perfect timing with Women’s History Month—Vancouver-based floral experiential company Fleurs de Villes is putting on "FEMMES," a pop-up series dedicated to female trailblazers and harbingers of change throughout history.
Kicking off March 30 in Chicago, "FEMMES" will travel to cities around the world, including Costa Mesa, Calif.; Toronto; Edinburgh, Scotland; Sydney; and Johannesburg; each event will feature mannequins modeling ensembles made entirely out of flowers and inspired by the likes of Billie Jean King, Oprah Winfrey and Joan Didion. By Sept. 25 of this year, the bespoke pop-up will have traveled to 16 cities in four different countries to host more than 35 free pop-up shows in town plazas, malls and shopping centers alike.
“Everyone loves flowers, and everyone has their own story to tell about flowers," co-founder of Fleurs de Villes Tina Barkley told BizBash. "Through the Me Too movement, we have learned a lot about so many remarkable women, so we decided to bring the two together."
Designed as a self-guided exhibit, "FEMMES"—which translates to “women” in French—is not just about stopping to smell the flowers. Fleurs de Villes’ team has also created a unique QR code to accompany each mannequin, which leads guests to a biography of the woman being honored. “We do this all in-house,” Barkley added.
The mannequins, which are made out of thousands of blooms, are constructed by the company’s team of “fleur”ists, who are selected for their “sound understanding of mechanics,” Barkley said, adding that, “several florists, even experienced ones, can be timid about joining the show, but we have a great support and mentoring system in place to help them.”
“We like to give the florist as much creative license as possible, because this is what makes participating in Fleurs de Villes so much fun for these artists. The designs begin a couple days prior to the start of the event using materials that will last, dry or age gracefully. Forms are built, equipment is prepared and flowers [are] conditioned. Then, the process moves on-site, and that usually takes a full day. It’s a fairly detailed process, but the results speak for themselves,” Barkley explained.
Keep scrolling for a closer look at Fleurs de Villes’ "FEMMES."