If Dale Chihuly is all about excess (of volume, colour, scale – virtuosity even), his Seattle Garden and Glass Museum is all about staging. The dramatic presentation made this installation of art glass one of the highlights of Seattle’s Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum.
Wooden boats, overflowing with treasure, rested eerily on lake-like mirrors. Perfectly directed spotlights set the glass glowing and gleaming in the dimly lit room. Shadows rippling down the rear wall heaped on the visual complexity.
I love this piece of artwork – its patterns and planes; the way it seems to float; its opulence and fragility. The stillness.
The mind is tempted by the floating effect to group, then isolate, and even to weigh the objects (which is real and which reflected? – surely they are heavier than they appear?) so we imaginatively get to grips with what we see.
It makes me smile to remember that when I saw the subject of this week’s challenge was mirror my immediate thought was “I’ve got nothing for that… I’ll skip it”.
Turns out I’ve got this shot too, taken in the butterfly house at this summer’s RHS Hampton Court Flower Show: almost a mirror image.
Mother Nature might not have got round to art glass (well, not directly, anyhow) but she’s got all the elements down. The colours, rippling patterns and eye-like orbs have all the drama and fascination of the art glass, in softer, living forms.