Sneak peek at Dale Chihuly's new Seattle glass garden



Posted on November 15, 2011 at 3:55 PM

Updated Thursday, Nov 17 at 10:21 AM

SEATTLE -- Renowned glass sculpture artist Dale Chihuly provided a sneak peek Tuesday of his new indoor-outdoor Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit that is set to open next spring at Seattle Center.

The biggest highlight is a 4,500 square foot glasshouse that will display the largest suspended structure that Chihuly has ever made. The red, orange, yellow, oxblood, citron and amber display will be made of approximately 2,000 elements.

The glasshouse will be built next door to a 12,000 square foot exhibition center now being constructed next to the Space Needle, where the former Fun Forest once stood.

The exhibition center will include nine galleries:

  • Glass Forest (One of Chihuly’s first installations. The first institutional version of the Neon Glass Forest was in 1971 at the Museum of Contemporary Craft – now the Museum of Arts and Design.)
  • Northwest Room - Tabac Baskets Table, wooden shelves with early works, i.e. Baskets, Cylinders and Soft Cylinders. Edward S. Curtis photogravures, American Indian trade Blankets (following the same inspiration Dale had in creating the Chihuly Boathouse Northwest room.)
  • Sealife Tower - 15'h x 12'w - estimated glass part count 1,023 (including sculpted sealife form such as starfish, octopus, conk shells, sea anemones, urchins, manta rays.)
  • Persian Ceiling - 36'L x 14' 6"w (First presented at Chihuly’s 1992 solo exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum)
  • Mille Fiori - 58' x 20' ellipse (Mille Fiori is Italian for 1000 Flowers. (First exhibited in 2003 at the Tacoma Museum of Art.)
  • Boat – Ikebana (Chihuly first filled boats with glass forms in Nuutajärvi, Finland during the 1995 Chihuly Over Venice project.)
  • Chandeliers – Balboni, Apollonia,(both from the 1995 Chihuly Over Venice project) Crystal 2-tier, Yellow Frog foot, Orange Hornet and Eelgrass (The first Chandelier Chihuly ever presented was during the artist’s 1992 solo exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum.)
  • Drawing Wall (Similar to the expansive Drawing Wall on exhibit at the Orlando Museum of Art, 2004.)
  • Macchia Forest (The series began in 1981 with Chihuly wanting to use all 300 colors in the hotshop. Italian for spotted, named by Chihuly’s friend Italo Scanga.)
  • Lecture Hall and Theater (approximately 70 seats)

Next door, there will be a 16,000 square foot outdoor garden will feature artworks including:

  • A 16’ diameter Sun ( approximately 2,200 glass elements)
  • A 30’ Yellow and Green Icicle Tower (approximately 2,100 glass elements)
  • A 20’ Rose Crystal Tower  (approximately 250 elements)
  • Seal Pups
  • Red Reeds (approximately 100 glass elements)
  • Neodymium  Reeds and Logs (approximately 250 glass elements)
  • Blue Reeds
  • Ikebana
  • Quadpod Towers
  • Variety of artwork and sculptures throughout the Garden

(Information provided by Chihuly Garden and Glass)