Chihuly Garden and Glass
Backstory and Context
About Dale Chihuly
Dale Chihuly, born in Tacoma, Washington in 1941, studied at the Universities of Washington and Wisconsin, as well as the Rhode Island School of Design, where he subsequently established and taught the glass program. He studied glassblowing in Venice on a Fulbright Fellowship and, in 1971, co-founded Washington State's international glass center, Pilchuck Glass School. Featured in over 200 museums across the globe, Chihuly has exhibits in the Louvre in Paris, on the canals and piazzas of Venice, in Jerusalem's Tower of David Museum, in the Royal Botanic Gardens and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and in many American museums and architectural installations. Since 2001, he has focused on exhibits in botanical settings .
The Seattle Center and the Chihuly Garden and Glass Exhibition
Built for the World's Fair in 1962, the Seattle Center's Space Needle was constructed by Howard S. Wright II. His family owns and manages the Center, and decided to reinvigorate it as a cultural community gathering space. The Wright family asked Dale Chihuly to design an exhibition hall, garden installation, and glasshouse on a 1.5 acre plot, using the existing building as the exhibition hall. Construction began in 2011, and LEED Silver certification and installation of the art began the following year .
galleries and three "Drawing Walls" are included in the Exhibition
Hall. The 40-foot tall Glasshouse, designed to resemble a conservatory, is the
centerpiece of the Exhibition and features a 100-foot long suspended sculpture.
The Garden combines natural elements such as trees and flowers with four large glass
sculptures, Reeds on Logs, the Sun, and the Crystal and Icicle Towers. The
Exhibition also features a Theater which shows videos on Chihuly's artistic
process and how his sculptures are created. The Theater also holds lectures and