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Artist of the Week: Dale Chihuly

July 3, 2010

It’s summer, so who better for my artist of the week than an artist that loves his work displayed in sunny gardens and amid the tropical plants in greenhouses!

Dale Chihuly Japanese Floats

Photo by Shellie Lewis

Dale Chihuly is a glass artist that likes to work big.  If you get a chance to see his work in person, definitely go.  I took these photos when he used the display of his art to help (and probably save) the financially suffering Garfield Park Conservatory greenhouses in Chicago circa 2002.

I particularly love his brightly colored Macchia bowls, this one was the  size of a laundry basket, and just it was just brilliant.

Chihuly macchia bowl

Photo by Shellie Lewis

He has an impressive body of work.  I do love artists that keep putting their work out there.  I was in the tiny public art museum in Birmingham, Alabama and was delighted to find a Chihuly piece there, and wound up geeking out over it with a volunteer at help desk of the museum who indicated she was a big fan herself.  You will find Chihuly glass art in casinos, hotels and assorted other places that attract travelers, so stay alert.

His work has various series, there are many forms that I look to be particularly his.  Long undulating tubes and frilly edges give the impression of things that are alive, maybe from orchids, plants or an ocean reef.  He has drawn on Native American basket collections and sculpture in the round for inspiration.  If you watch any of the many documentary films on him (check Netflix), or visit his website, he has particularly unique ways of drawing and painting ideas on paper to later translate to glass.

Portfolio website:


Dale Chihuly

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