January 17th, 2009

Dream of Bingo

Chihuly: The Nature of Glass

On Tuesday, I went to the Desert Botanical Gardens with Greg's mom. They have a show by Dale Chihuly called "The Nature of Glass." It's... a bunch of installation pieces, I guess, worked in with all the cacti. I don't know how to describe it other than to say it was very Chihuly-esque.

It was amazing. These pictures really don't do it justice. We went in the evening, and that was really the best time to go. We got to see things both in daylight and lighted after it got dark, and there was one piece (the big yellow pillar) that we saw just as it was lit up by the setting sun, and it was absolutely perfect.

I think Chihuly must have spent a lot of time wandering through the gardens and thinking about what he could put where. There were a number of times when the sculpture actually made me pay more attention to nearby plants. And it sounds totally cheesy, but a lot of the pieces really did "invite you to take a closer look". I think with someone whose work is as distinctive as Chihuly's, there can be a temptation to dismiss him as gimmicky, but he really is a very good artist. He also does work that's much more impressive in person than it is in photos or video. A lot of the pieces looked totally different from different angles, and moving past them was an important part of the experience. There's a reason dude is famous.

Anyway, if you get a chance to go see this show, you absolutely should. It's fantastic in all senses of the word.

Here's my flickr set: