It might be called a “garden,” but the wildly colorful creations on display in the Chihuly Garden and Glass museum outshines even the most beautiful flowerbed.
“It is every artist’s dream to be able to showcase their work in one place and I am pleased to have this opportunity in my home community, explained legendary glass artist Dale Chihuly. “The best works of my career are brought together in this exhibition and I hope everyone likes it.”
Located at Seattle Center, the attraction transformed 1.5 acres of asphalt into an outdoor garden, a 40-foot-tall atrium and eight galleries of Chihuly’s art. Chihuly Garden and Glass gathers a wide range of the artist’s work, including a signature glass series and large architectural installations. The exhibition’s centerpiece vestibule, known as the “Glass House,” inspired by his two of Chihuly’s favorite buildings, Paris’ Sainte-Chapelle and London’s Crystal Palace, displays one of the artist’s largest creations – a suspended 100-foot-long glass sculpture comprised of 1,340 individual flowers of translucent red, orange, amber and yellow. An adjoining outdoor garden, within sight of the Space Needle, serves as a backdrop for a number of massive glass sculptures and other installations.
In addition to the artworks, the exhibition café premiers Chihuly’s extensive personal collections including carnival chalk ware, vintage accordions, vintage radios and cameras. An onsite theater presents short videos documenting the artist’s creation process. A large bookstore offers the works of local artisans and a variety of books and materials relating to Chihuly’s artworks, including some studio editions and prints.
Dale Chihuly co-founded Hilltop Artists and Pilchuck Glass School, both of which are partners in the project, along with Pratt Fine Arts Center, ArtsFund and Seattle Public Schools. The group founded the recent creation of a science curriculum based on glass blowing for middle school students in the public schools.
Tickets cost $19 dollars. Chihuly Garden and Glass expects to draw 400,000 tourists and other visitors a year. www.chihulygardenandglass.com.