It started back in 1989 when I took an critical writing class at Ohio State as part of my curriculum. For one of the papers we had to visit 3 art galleries and write up our interpretations of the artwork that was being shown. Well, funny enough, one of the galleries was showing Dale Chihuly. It was his original ‘Sea Forms’ on display. With the famous ‘lip wrap’ technique where he fuses two colors of glass and gets a beautiful seamless edge with one color outside one inside. Not to mention the wavy playful shapes of the ‘scallop-esque’ shells that sat on their pedestals. He has since come out with many different shapes, and while they’re all beautiful, I still am in love with the originals. Someday I might get lucky enough to own one.

1998

Bellagio Hotel, Las Vegas, NV

When the Bellagio first opened I heard they had a Dale Chihuly ceiling that cost millions of dollars and I almost lost my mind. I was living there at the time and just before we moved away to Phoenix we visited the Bellagio and I got to see the ceiling. Which of course, this photo doesn’t do it justice. But the camera I used was dinosaur compared to the one I have now. The ceiling was unbelievable. All wired up and hanging above the visitors. Up until that time, and probably still is, one of the most amazing things I have ever seen.

2004

Franklin Park Conservatory, Columbus, OH

While home visiting Mom one year the Franklin Park Conservatory had a special event in which they had ‘Chihuly in the Garden’. Various objects were placed on display around the Conservatory’s glass house and the central courtyard and garden. Mom and I went to visit and it was very amazing. It was the first installation of his I had seen where items were placed in and among vegetation. Previous to this I had only seen his works on display in the Columbus Museum of Art for his Chihuly over Venice series in 1996, and other installations around Columbus in previous years.

2005

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Kew, Surrey, United Kingdom

I traveled to the UK at the end of October to visit friends. Afterward one of the girls and I traveled around together seeing the sights and having a fantastic time. Melanie and I visited Kew gardens together and got to see the Chihuly exhibit on display around the grounds as well as the fantastic botanical specimens they have on display. It was a quite typical cloudy and wettish November day in the UK and we made the most of it. The park is simply huge and even taking the tram around we ran out of time and didn’t get to see all of the seasonal houses. At the time they were also refurbishing the Dutch house and have since completed it and I hear it’s fabulous. I would love to return again someday to see the remainder.

Temple of Bellona, Kew Gardens

Temperate House, Kew Gardens

Temperate House, Kew Gardens

Museum #1, Kew Gardens

Boat on Lake, Kew Gardens

Melanie at Kew Gardens

Cyndi & Mel, Temperate House, Kew Gardens

I swear these two look like creatures from Dr. Who…

Pagoda, Kew Gardens

Temple, Kew Gardens

Stone Face, Kew Gardens

Memorial Bench, Kew Gardens

Palm House Display, Kew Gardens

Palm House Display, Kew Gardens

2009

Franklin Park Conservatory, Columbus, OH

Back for more love and adoration from Central Ohioans Mr. Chihuly set up another display of his artwork once again inside the Conservatory at the Park. And once again it was wonderful. This time they also set aside space for a room where you could sit and learn about the works of art, about Pilchuck, and about the man himself. Speaking of Pilchuck… I swear I’ll get to visit sometime for the Open House. I almost made it last year. Missed it by a week. Closest I’ve been yet.

My all-time favorite piece. Glass pistachios in a lip wrap sea form bowl.

200 year old white oak with spears

Monarch Butterfly

Emily Brock, Flower Passage 2005

Walla Wallas in the upper garden

Walla Wallas in the Bamboo Garden

Walla Wallas in the Zen Garden

2011

Desert Botanical Gardens, Phoenix, AZ

Chihuly had a show here at the Botanical Gardens for 6 months from 2008-2009, but of course I never found out about it till it was gone.  Like many things here in Phoenix, there is no large grapevine of information on what to see and do, at least I haven’t found one yet. So the only part I got to see were the giant glass cacti that are permanently installed at the entrance to the Botanical gardens when I visited earlier this year.