Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly
Dale Chihuly
Chihuly's work is marked by intense, vibrant color and by subtle linear decoration. Patterns are created by fusing into the surface of his vessels “drawings” composed of prearranged glass threads.
Gold Spotted Venetian, Dale Chihuly- Embedded
Gold Spotted Venetian With Green Coil
Blown Glass, 28” X 16”
Permanent Collection
Gift Of The Boeing Corporation
BIO
Dale Chihuly revolutionized the Studio Glass movement through the practice of using teams, rather than acting as a solitary artist alone in a studio. In part a reaction to his disability, which was the loss of one eye, this has allowed him to develop complex, multipart sculptures that move blown glass out of the confines of the small, precious object and into the realm of large-scale contemporary sculpture.

In 1965 he enrolled in the University of Wisconsin's hot glass program, the first of its kind in the U.S. After receiving a degree in sculpture, Chihuly attended the ceramics program at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he established its renowned glass program, turning out a generation of recognized artists.

THE ART
Chihuly's work is marked by intense, vibrant color and by subtle linear decoration. Patterns are created by fusing into the surface of his vessels “drawings” composed of prearranged glass threads. Forms are then blown in optic molds, which created ribbed motifs. His signature elongated, linear blown forms, a product of the glassblowing process, result in highly baroque, writhing elements.

His work is strongly autobiographical. His abstracted flower forms are reminiscent of his mother's garden in Tacoma. Other series allude to his childhood in Tacoma, Washington, marked by his love of the sea. Even when the artist responds to earlier historical decorative arts forms, the imagery has personal significance. Gardens are the dominant theme in Chihuly’s most recent installations, including Chihuly in the Park: A Garden of Glass at Chicago's Garfield Park Conservatory (2001–2). Other sites include those in Columbus, OH, Atlanta GA, Coral Gables, FL, St. Louis, MO, New York City and the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, UK.

TEXT adapted from Dale Chihuly 2002, Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, New Jersey
By Davira S. Taragin, Director of Exhibitions and Programs, Racine Art Museum