Saturday, March 7, 2009

Chihuly: The Nature of Glass

Bamboo Reeds, 2008
Through the end of May, the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona is home to Chihuly: The Nature of Glass. These amazing glass scultures are the creation of Dale Chihuly. His exhibits have been installed in other botanical gardens in the past - but I can't imagine them being showcased any better than they are in this desert setting.
Many of the cacti and succulents are full of buds. I can only imagine how gloriously colorful this garden will be in a couple of weeks.

This piece is entitled Float Boat. . . . and I think it would look mah-va-lous in my shade garden . . . .

Blue Reeds, Marlins, and Floats, 2008.

In the center, spot the Marlin. Isn't that amazing?

In keeping with the blue theme, the Texas Mountain Laurel were in full bloom - and smelling heavenly (well, heavenly if you are a lover of Grape Pop). Bees and butterflies enjoyed these flowers as much as us mammalian garden visitors.


Chihuly also installed a few pieces in this pond. It's entitled Blue Polyvitro Crystals. They aren't make out of glass, but a plastic material that Dale calls "polyvitro".

Tucked into the shade garden was this water feature. The water dripping from the tank to the pond made a melodious sound. It also attracted doves and quail. We took a long respit on the bench here while waiting for the sun to set and the glass displays to be lit.


If you were to arrive at the garden after dark, you would be greeted by these Desert Wildflower Towers. They were attractive in the sunlight and breathtaking after dark.


The large orb among these Ferns is The Sun.

I thought that Saffron Tower was the highlight of the nighttime display. You could see it from almost anywhere in the garden - and the roads surrounding the Desert Botanical Garden.


This is only a taste of Chihuly's display - His chandeliers are incredible (but my photos of them were not)

8 comments:

Jan said...

Those blue glass reeds are gorgeous. Thanks for posting these wonderful photos. I bet it was unbelievable in person.

Jan
Always Growing

themanicgardener said...

Wow. At first glance, I thought the red spires in the first photo were some exotic desert plant I'd never seen, and then when I got down to the Tesax mountain laurel I assumed that the big blue things were glass--but no, they're flowers. All of it looks amazing.
--Kate

Tatyana said...

Beautiful pictures, MaryBeth! We live close to Tacoma, WA where Dale Chihuly's mother had a garden. They say that he gets the ideas for his abstract flowers from that garden. Thanks for such a good post!

Pam/Digging said...

I've seen pics of this display on at least one, maybe two, other blogs. But I'm bowled over anew by how beautiful it is. I'm jealous that you got to see it all in person!

Michelle said...

Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos! This is what makes the world of blogging so much fun!! I might never have gotten the chance to see such wonderful art had it not been for you. The blue reeds were absolutely amazing :-)

~Michelle
Getting Dirty in Texas

Mary Beth said...

JAN - There wasn't a single display that didn't just knock my socks off - and everything I saw was my favorite - until I wandered to the next display . . .

KATE - The glass really showcased the plants - and the plants really showcased the glass. I do wonder how many hours went into planning the installation.

TATYANA - His mother must have had a very beautiful garden to inspire such beautiful works of art! I certainly look forward to seeing more of his work.

PAM - It is an amazing display - my pictures don't do it justice

MICHELLE - Yes, virtual visits to amazing displays and gardens is definitely one of the best things about blogging.

islandgal246 said...

I first heard of Chihuly from my mother in law who lives in Florida. He had an exhibition at Fairchild Gardens and his work is beyond our imagination. He is a modern day wonder! Thanks for showcasing his works!

Tamara said...

Thank you so much for posting pictures of your trip to see the Chihuly exhibit! They are stunning, breathtaking and a little heartbreaking to not see in person ;)