When Morgan Howell Moylan was first assigned the sculpture “Daphne” as her inspiration for Art in Bloom, she was stumped.
The annual event challenges florists to craft massive arrangements based on pieces at the N.C. Museum of Art, and “Daphne” is, on the surface, a seemingly plain marble bust of a nymph found in Greek mythology.
“It’s all white, it’s marble, and you want to do something fun and interesting,” Moylan said.
But she learned more about the inspiration behind the sculpture, made by artist Harriet Hosmer in the mid-1800s, and where she could add her own color and flourishes.
“I learned the story of Daphne, who is shunning Apollo’s advances, and she has difficulty doing it, and she has to give up her beauty to become a laurel tree,” said Moylan, who owns West Queen Studio in Hillsborough. “So I’m giving a nod to the story and a nod to the artist.”