Under perfect Florida evening skies, Marie Selby Botanical Gardens provided a 15-acre backdrop for a gala right out of “Alice in Wonderland,” channeling artist Yayoi Kusama and her signature polka dots.
About 500 guests strolled the great lawn, which was transformed into a magical world with 15-foot-tall mushrooms decorated with dots in honor of Selby Gardens’ 50th Anniversary Orchid Ball: Infinity, and the opening of “Yayoi Kusama: A Letter to Georgia O’Keeffe.”
While Kusama, now 94 and living in Japan, did not attend, her vibe was everywhere. Many guests wore polka-dot attire, including ascots, bowties, bags, gowns and suits.
Co-chairs Liebe Gamble and Ashley Kozel hired Nicole Kaney of NK Productions, who curated tables with polka-dot boxes, red sunglasses and Fausti Gilberti’s book, “Yayoi Kusama Covered Everything in Dots and Wasn’t Sorry.”
Proceeds from the event support Selby Gardens’ community education programs, international research, conservation, and world-class horticulture displays, while enabling thousands of underserved children and their families to connect with their bayfront sanctuaries.