Around the Globe with Artist Dale Chihuly
Written By Jean Sexton
In Our Gardens
Chihuly at Biltmore was on display from May 17 to October 7, 2018.
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“Glass is the most magical of all materials. It transmits light in a special way.” – Dale Chihuly
In preparing to host Chihuly at Biltmore—the first art exhibition in Biltmore’s historic gardens and the first North Carolina garden exhibition by American artist Dale Chihuly—it is important to understand the impact of Chihuly’s work in the United States and around the globe.
Early international exhibitions
Dale Chihuly is one of the most recognized artists in the world, and his work has been shown in public and private settings for more than four decades. Some of his earliest international exhibitions included São Paulo, Brazil, in 1979 and Tel Aviv, Israel, in 1980. By the late 1980s, Chihuly’s work had been displayed in Montreal, Paris, and Lisbon, setting the stage for an ever-increasing presence around the globe.
The 1990s featured the creation of many works of art that have become icons. For the development of the extraordinary Chihuly Over Venice exhibition, Chihuly traveled with his team of glassblowers to glass factories in Finland, Ireland, Mexico and Italy. Working with local glass masters, Chihuly took the opportunity to experiment and innovate, creating a new vocabulary of forms. In September 1996, Chandeliers from the international project were installed over the canals and piazzas of Venice.
In 2000, more than one million visitors marveled at a dramatic range of sculptural installations during Chihuly in the Light of Jerusalem at the Tower of David Museum. The project included installations of vibrant Red and Yellow Reeds, Green Grass, and Towers in hues of blue and white, and featured the monumental Crystal Mountain, a forty-seven foot high, thirty-three foot wide sculpture adorned by 2,000 rose colored Polyvitro crystals, among others.
Glass and Gardens
Chihuly’s lifelong fascination for glasshouses developed into a series of exhibitions within botanical settings. His Garden Cycle began in 2001 at Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago. Chihuly exhibited at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, near London, in 2005, and at more than a dozen beautiful sites in the United States, including the New York and Atlanta Botanical Gardens.
Chihuly’s artwork is featured in more than 200 museum collections worldwide. In addition, there are permanent exhibitions in the U.S. and one in Japan, with others in development for 2018 and beyond.
Experiencing Chihuly at Biltmore
We hope you will join us for Chihuly at Biltmore May 17–October 7, 2018. Enjoy the breathtaking installations by day, then discover an entirely new experience during Chihuly Nights at Biltmore with the effects of dramatic lighting upon the luminous colors and graceful forms of these awe-inspiring glass sculptures.
While Chihuly at Biltmore is included in estate admission, Chihuly Nights at Biltmore requires a separate ticket purchase. These special nighttime events are held on select evenings during the exhibition and feature a self-guided visit of the sculptures.