dianamuse feature: dale chihuly

Nemo meets Louis XV meets Alien.

Dale Chihuly, the internationally celebrated Seattle artist, is a byword for all that is spectacular and exciting in contemporary glass. Chihuly's fantastic creations are in the grand and historic tradition of Venetian glass; rich colors and extravagant shapes complement organic subtlety and visual and textural refinement.

Since the early 1980s, all of Chihuly's work has been marked by intense, vibrant color and subtle linear decoration. At first, he achieved patterns by fusing "drawings" composed of prearranged glass threads into the surface of his vessels; he then had his forms blown in optic molds, which created ribbed motifs. He also explored bold, colorful lip wraps that contrasted sharply with the brilliant colors of his vessels. Finally, beginning with the Venetians of the early 1990s, elongated, linear blown forms - a product of the glassblowing process - have become part of his vocabulary, resulting in highly baroque, writhing elements.

Chihuly’s work on paper is a fascinating study of variety. Many of his drawings are drenched in thick, bold layers of color. Others are more elusive—just a hint of form sketched with a fistful of pencils or a confidently manipulated charcoal. Over the years, his style has evolved, becoming more abstract and more elaborate, and his drawings, in some cases, have become much larger. But there are no rules; a technique that Chihuly favored a decade before may resurface again. The excitement of Chihuly’s work on paper is in its unpredictability. In two dimensions, Chihuly is free to let his grandest schemes come to fruition.

You can more directly sense my energy in my drawings than perhaps any other way.
—Dale Chihuly

:chihuly at the v&a, 2001; chihuly website


Jen said...

I just love Chihuly's glass works - that was a highlight of Seattle for me.

My Castle in Spain said...

So fabulous...

Thank you for this post !

Lori said...

Wow. And wow. Stunning work. Thanks so much for a wonderful post!

girl meets glamour said...

is this the artist's whose work is in the Bellagio? well, great pieces either way!!