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Dee Callahan Art Blog

I Love Dale Chihuly!

by decal5 , August 20, 2010—12:00 AM

Topics: Artwork, Chihuly, beauty, blown glass, creative, flowers, images, opinions, reality, strength

Today, I decided that I needed to take a break to rejuvenate, and just write another blog about something or someone in art who had influenced me; or given me the motivation to create art of my own! Every artist needs a muse or a mentor, and I am no different than most~

As I looked back into my archives of photographs,I found one of my favorites which I have posted here. I call it "Springtime" because of all the bright colors and the flowers that are in bloom! This creation is the work of world reknown artist Dale Chihuly and today I honor him with this blog! I took this picture after visiting the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas where his prominent floral glass blowing artwork is magnificently displayed.

Now, one would not believe how much strength the art of glass-blowing takes. I remember when I was younger,I wanted to try my hand at it, but to be a great glass-blower not only takes great skill,it takes great strength! You are often manipulating hot glass for hours on end, and this is no art for the fool hardy to undertake...

Dale Chihuly has been influential within the Studio Glass movement for decades, and he continues to revolutionize the art of handblown glass. He generally works with free form and in an unorthodox manner. His results elicit widespread admiration from a full spectrum of viewers, both young and old alike. One art historian even calls Chihuly's work " Liquid Art" It is amazing to see up close and personal; and since I have had the good fortune of having lived in a few places where Chihuly lived at the same time,I have seen it real up front and close!

Chihuly was born in 1941 in Tacoma Washington, where he went on to study Interior Design and Architecture at the University of Washington, in Seattle. He also went to graduate school on a scholarship at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he studied glass under Harvey Littleton. He finished his graduate studies at the Rhode Island School of Design,in 1968. The same year, he received a Fullbright Scholarship to study in Venice, Italy, at the Venini glass factory. The following year he became faculty there!! He established a glass program, and in 1971 he returned to Seattle where he co-founded the Pilchuck Glass School near Stanwood, Washington. I was fortunate to visit his factory and school,being that I lived in Kent....

Through the 70's Chihuly divided his time between the Rhode Island School of Design and Pilchuck! He also developed a philosophy which was that he was less concerned with being narrative or figurative in his works, but rather,he be involved in the glass, and the light passing through it. He loved the Phenomenon of light being transmitted through colored glass,and he made me love it too...and him!!!

Over the years, Chihuly created a wide vocabulary of blown glass forms. He did baskets, Seaforms, Ikebana, Venetians and Chandeliers and of course his very famous magnificent flora. In his floral artwork, he used the least amount of tools that he could, so that his result was that his flowers looked like they were coming from nature. This is evident in his work today. If you have seen his Botanical Exhibition as it travels the U.S., you would be in awe! In his garden installations he juxtaposes his forms with those of nature, establishing a direct and immediate dialogue with the desert environment like he did here at the Phoenix , AZ. Botanical Gardens. It was hard to tell which was real and which was memorex!

My hat's off to you Mr. Dale Chihuly. I have seen your work in Seattle where I lived for 26 yrs, in Arizona, where I currently reside; at the gardens, of course in Vegas at the Bellagio, and how could I ever forget Waikoloa!? I look forward to being influenced again very soon!

Who influences you? It may be a loved one, a friend or someone who gives you that extra ooomph, when ya need it to get out there and continue doing art!! Give Kudos to someone special in your art world today. Let me hear from you here! I value all of your opinions and appreciate feedback~ Continue to enjoy creating art!



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