Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Dale Chihuly at the Dallas Arboretum

Filing this under better-late-than-never, when I was home a couple of weeks ago, I went with my friends Emily and Stephanie to the new Dale Chihuly installation at the Dallas Arboretum. I thought it would be great, but it defied my expectations.

Of course, you can go to the Arboretum during the day -- the 32 pieces are strewn throughout the park's 66 acres -- but it seemed more than likely that the installation would be most spectacular at night, when everything is all lit up. During the summer, the Arboretum is open three nights a week -- Tuesdays and Thursdays feature music (most cover/tribute bands), while on Wednesday, it's just open, but you have to buy a ticket for either a 6pm or 8pm entry. We went for 8pm on Wednesday, thinking -- rightly -- that we'd see the installation in the (waning) daylight, at dusk and at night.

Of course, this is a post better written with photos, though I don't think mine do the installation justice. The combination of the gardens, the warm summer air and Dale Chihuly's glass works was enchanting.

I was curious about whether Chihuly had made the pieces specifically for the Dallas Arboretum (the presence of the blue-and-white ball above called the Dallas Star seemed to indicate yes, though as it turns out, only 15 of the pieces were made for this particular installation) and in looking for the answer, I came across a pretty negative review from Gaile Robinson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. She wrote, "For this traveling body of work, as for all of his pieces, he says, 'I try to make something no one has seen before.' In that he has succeeded, but there may be room on the dais soon, as Chihuly seems to care more about his traveling garden circus and not always in the best way." Ouch, huh? She felt that Chihuly's pieces overwhelmed the flatness of the Arboretum, calling the art "pushy," though from the last paragraph, it also sounds like she went during the day.

That aside, everyone else seems to have enjoyed the exhibit thus far, including us. And it's running through November 5, so there's still plenty of time to check it out. Pin It

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