I didn’t know a lot about Dale Chihuly until an upcoming trip to Seattle came up in conversation.
“You have to go to Chihuly Gardens,” almost everyone told me.
That was enough for me. I added it to my list, most of which only included local cafes, a few bookstores, but not many tourist attractions. I was told that it’s the most incredible place and that even photos wouldn’t be able to capture the pure depth, art, awe and size of these glass sculptures — both of those statements are absolutely correct.
In this garden museum that hides in the shadow of the Space Needle, I was introduced to Dale Chihuly and the concepts of his glass-blown sculptures. We walked beneath draping chandeliers constructed with dozens of individual bulbs of hand-formed glass in vibrant colors. We oohed and ahh’d as walked entirely around a sprouting garden that reminded of an Alice in Wonderland dream sequence set in outer space.
In the audio room, we cooled off (I was there during Seattle’s heat wave … it was a real thing for like 72 hours), and watch four videos on Chihuly, his quirkiness, his vision and his purposefully over-the-top creations around the world.
We ended the tour with a few moments of silence in the massive glass house, staring up at my favorite piece, this 100-foot-long mass of fiery flower-shaped glass. The structure — representing Chihuly’s love for conservatories — spans 4,500 square feet of light-filled space.
It was easily one of my favorite Seattle destinations. And now I want to become a glass blower. Thanks, Seattle.
But first, the museum starts with a Pendleton exhibit. I’m not sure why, either, but I liked it. And then there was glass. And a lot of it on water: Each — shall we call them tentacles? — is an individual project, but is joined together on the same base to create one larger piece. A hallway ceiling. Can I get this sized to my bedroom ceiling, please?: Bananas on the brain?: This is my favorite. Unfortunately, it didn’t fit in the backseat for the roadtrip home. What are some of your own favorite Seattle jaunts?