Are you familiar with the artwork of Dale Chihuly? He is an American artisan of the Studio Glass Movement and elevated the perception of the glass medium from the realm of craft, to fine glass sculpture. He is a true artistic master for our time, whose glass art works are in over 200 museum collections worldwide. I became familiar with his glass from exhibits I saw in the de Young Museum in San Francisco and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, plus a large display at the Borgata Hotel and Casino in New Jersey. I wrote a blog post about the Borgata Hotel collection, which you can read on this link.
When I heard that the Denver Botanic Garden was presenting the Rocky Mountain Region's first major outdoor exhibition of Chihuly's artwork, I was very excited, and determined to see it. The exhibit began on June 14, 2014 and will end November 30, 2014, so I knew time was running out. Happily, my husband and I finally had a free day to see the exhibit last week. The Denver Botanic Garden is a top ranked US botanical garden, which I've visited many times in the past, but to see it decorated with Chihuly's glass sculptures was a special treat! As soon as we entered the garden the dazzling "Blue Icicle Tower" greeted us! Chihuly has done many outdoor exhibits of his glass art before, and said that he chose his best works for the the Denver Botanic Garden exhibit.
The O'Fallon Perennial Walk in the garden became transformed into the "Perennial Fiori," -- a magical blending of natural flowers with glass flowers of all shapes, sizes and colors.
Here are a few examples of the art glass along the walk:
The exhibit beautifully blended the glass sculptures into the natural beauty of the botanic garden's landscape in many varied, and visually delightful, ways.
The glass sculptures looked unique, viewed both near and far.
They incorporated themselves so well into the landscape, as to look like a natural part of the garden!
The "Neodymium Reeds" seen both at a distance....
....and close up. They were a bright touch of color in the Rock Alpine Garden.
Although we made our visit to the exhibit at the end of October, the autumn weather in Denver had been mild enough that roses, and many other flower's, were still in bloom. The glass made beautiful backdrops and accents for each!
The contrast of the "Red Reeds" in the native grasses of the Plains Gardens was stunning.
As was the colorful "Float Boat" in the Monet Pool. I think this was my favorite glass art sculpture of all!
Just look at the profusion of art glass balls in the boat and their reflection on the water! Just breathtaking!
Every turn in the garden lead us towards more beauty.
It was hard to tell what was real, and what was not, at times
These are the blue "Walla Walla" onion like shapes floating in the Japanese Garden...
...which lead to the "Blue and Purple Boat," It was another favorite of mine, and I wanted to photograph it from every angle!
More reflections on the water.
The autumn trees became a lovely backdrop for the bright blues and purples glass.
Spectacular color was everywhere!
The "Summer Sun" was still shining in the Denver Botanical Gardens!
Thank you, Dale Chihuly, for making the world a more beautiful place, and thank you Denver Botanic Garden for hosting such a spectacular display!
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