L+A+N+D Experience: Becoming Nutrient by Nicole Banowetz

By Jenny Zeller

Nicole Banowetz is a Colorado based sculptor who makes sewn inflatable sculptures and delicate assembled forms inspired by the natural world. Her installations spark awe and wonder and have been inspired by algae, bacteria, parasitic fungus, viruses, Radiolaria, rotifers, and dinoflagellates.

Becoming Nutrient by Nicole Banowetz

Made from damaged and discarded recycled tent material, Becoming Nutrient is an Inflatable style installation, that magnifies the microscopic organisms that decay felled trees and serve as nutrients of the forest floor.

This creative experience was developed during Banowetz’s first visit to Bernheim as a 2023 Artist in Residence, which coincided with windstorms that brought down hundreds of trees in the forest and arboretum. This natural phenomenon, accelerated by our extreme climate, inspired the design of a creative experience addressing the helpful organisms. Banowetz was additionally inspired after participating in the Mushroom Inoculation Workshop led by Natural Areas Specialist, Patrick Likins.

Installation of Becoming Nutrient by Nicole Benowetz at Bernheim Forest and Arboretum

In November 2023, Banowetz returned and worked with volunteers to assemble the work inspired by the site-specific fungi, slime molds, and mosses found growing on decaying logs in Bernheim.

Bernheim was fortunate to work with Nicole at this stage in her career, and we invite you to visit Bernheim. Watch the L+A+N+D grounds come to life and experience Becoming Nutrient by Nicole Banowetz, a wild and whimsical installation celebrating the tiny organisms that influence and nurture the forest.

About the Artist

Nicole Banowetz has created and exhibited work internationally in India, Italy, Ireland, Russia, Germany, Sweden, Poland, Taiwan, and England and has shown her work in the Biennial of the Americas, The Museum of Outdoor Arts, the Arvada Center, and the Kreuzburg Pavilion. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Denver Children’s Museum and the Denver Zoo, The Amsterdam Light Festival’s Light Art Collection, and Kids Awesome Museum in Taipei, Taiwan. Her next creative project takes her to the Netherlands where she is a featured artist in the 2024 Bosch Parade, a theatrical and musical art parade on the water, with Hieronymus Bosch is a source of inspiration!

About L+A+N+D

Opening in Summer 2024, L+A+N+D: an experience of discovery, is an exciting, initiative that annually celebrates innovative design concepts for immersive outdoor installations on a grand scale that spark imaginations, conversations, and a deeper appreciation of the natural world.

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