Dale Chihuly Returns to the Sonoran Desert with a Stunning New Exhibition at Two Iconic Arizona Venues

  • August 08, 2021 18:07

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Dale Chihuly, Alabaster and Amber Spire Towers (detail), 2018, 10 x 10 x 9' © Chihuly Studio. All Rights Reserved. "
Nathaniel Willson

Dale Chihuly makes a dramatic return to the Sonoran Desert on Dec. 3 with a stunning new exhibition at two of Arizona's most iconic venues, Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West.

Combining art, architecture and nature, Chihuly in the Desert, is set against majestic saguaros, landmark buildings and striking Papago buttes. Chihuly’s masterpieces stun from day to night as color, light and form come alive at two locations for a joint exhibition. Tickets go on sale to the public starting Oct. 4 for the exhibition that runs from Dec. 3, 2021 through June 19, 2022.

"Dale Chihuly Fire Amber Herons (detail), 2016 8 x 10 x 7' Atlanta Botanical Garden © 2021 Chihuly Studio. All Rights Reserved. "
Scott Mitchell Leen

“The Garden is thrilled to bring Chihuly back to the Valley since their first showing in 2008. We are co-presenting the exhibit with Taliesin West - both venues will be filled with extraordinary glass installations,” says Ken Schutz, the Garden’s executive director. “Partnering with Taliesin West has been a rewarding experience, and I think our successful collaboration might serve as a model for other arts and cultural organizations in the Valley as they bring their programs back on line.”

Chihuly in the Desert showcases Dale Chihuly’s stunning, large-scale installations nestled among the Desert Botanical Garden’s world-class collection of desert plants. Featuring installations on the Garden’s trails complemented by a major indoor gallery in Dorrance Hall, the dynamic exhibition includes never-before-seen installations and is a must-see throughout the seasons.

At Taliesin West, UNESCO World Heritage site and National Historic Landmark nestled in the desert foothills of the McDowell Mountains in Scottsdale, installations will be seen inside the building, on the lawns, floating on the water, and emerging from the desert itself. Each installation is a rich dialogue between Wright and Chihuly, pairing the work of two masters in a way that has never been done before. The Desert Laboratory of Wright’s Taliesin West is an ideal backdrop for exploring the elements and principles of design, present in both Chihuly’s sculptures and Wright’s architecture.

“Chihuly and Frank Lloyd Wright, two American originals taking inspiration from the country’s unique physical and cultural landscapes, are a perfect fit at Taliesin West,” says Stuart Graff, president and CEO of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. “With our World Heritage buildings and mountainous desert backdrop, the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation presents its first exhibition of this kind, revealing how art, architecture and nature come together to connect our visitors more deeply with the world around them.”

Chihuly’s spectacular artwork can be found in more than 200 museums worldwide, and garden exhibitions of his work have been mounted at the New York Botanical Garden, Atlanta Botanical Garden, Missouri Botanical Garden, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Garden, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and Gardens by the Bay, Singapore.

"Dale Chihuly Sol del Citrón (detail), 2014 15 x 14½ x 14' Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Coral Gables, Florida © 2021 Chihuly Studio. All Rights Reserved. "
Scott Mitchell Leen


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