Through a glass, brilliantly

 Tacoma Art Museum Glass circlesWelcome to the Tacoma Museum of Art where we were treated to a private dinner last weekend. The museum has a stellar collection of pieces by hometown-boy Dale Chihuly.

Chihuly Azure Macchia with Aqua Lip 1983The previous post ended with his Macchia series piece in the Hotel Murano collection. These Chihuly Macchia pieces are in the TMA collection.

 Chihuly two pieces Macchia 2Macchia Chihuly two piecesI find this broken brilliant coloration very beautiful. Macchia refers to ‘spots, blots and flecks’ in Italian.

Dale Chihuly Sap Green Macchia with Cobalt Lip 1985Chihuly’s designs feature wild colorations on the outside with a contrasting inside and another brilliant color on the lip.

 Macchia Chihuly Aqua and Deep CoralThese two layers of color are separated by a white, cloud-like layer of glass that keeps the colors individual and vibrant. Aren’t these lovely?

 Chihuly Basket seriesA few years ago I was privileged to have a private tour of Dale Chihuly’s Boat House Studio in Seattle. Among the wonders of that incredible space, my friend and I saw part of his collection of Native American baskets which was the inspiration for his Basket series of the 1980’s.

 Chihuly Basket Series The aging and collapse of these baskets of the Northwest caught the glassmaker’s imagination. This photograph shows the basket form at its’ most original. Something that appeals to us all – take one medium and transform it into another one!

 Chihuly Basket Series The colors and motifs lend a great sense of energy to these forms.

Chihuly small vesselA fairly small vessel shows the dynamic use of color and line on a simple shape.

 Chihuly lyrical vesselFor me this was probably the most sublime Chihuly piece I’ve ever seen with its lyrical shape and intensely delicate, subtle color. These are a far cry from the large installation pieces seen around the world.  Just the man and the glass…

 Chihuly Kew Gardens


About Susan

Susan Detjens is a former landscape painter, she lectures, demonstrates and runs workshops on floral design for museums, horticultural organizations and garden clubs across the US.
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