Chihuly Garden and Glass

Continuing on with the Seattle adventure: my friend and I visited Seattle center, which consisted of several attractions that were part of the Seattle CityPass, including the famous Space Needle. After taking in the view of Seattle from atop of the Space Needle, we moved next door to…

Chihuly Garden and Glass, located in Seattle, Washington

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Regular admission to Chihuly Glass and Garden is $20, and the hours are from 10am to 8pm, Sunday to Thursday, and 10am to 9pm, Friday to Saturday. I remember that there is parking at the Seattle Center, but I’m not sure about the cost as my friend and I took the bus. (I just followed my friend, so I have no clue how we got there. However, I do know there are several bus stops nearby, thus it should not be difficult to reach without a car.) Chihuly Garden and Glass isn’t one of the included Seattle CityPass attractions, however there is a $5 off coupon in the booklet. Thus, the total I paid for admission after the coupon, and including taxes, was $15.75 (I saved about 25%, yay).

Before I delve into Chihuly Glass and Garden, a snippet of info about who this Chihuly person is. (I’ve never heard of him before, but it appears he’s quite famous.) Dale Chihuly is an American glass sculptor, from Washington State, who is known for making large scale sculptors out of blown glass.

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After paying for admission, we ventured into the first exhibit area, entitled Glass Forest (first picture on the top left). I can kind of see how it’s a forest, however not really too much; nevertheless, I was amazed by the colors and shapes of the glass. When I think of glass, I automatically see the flat transparent window kind, so to see glass with curvy shapes and in such large scales was intriguing. The Sea Life Room was pretty neat (bottom row); every piece in the exhibit consisted some aspect of ocean life. The center piece was really beautiful (bottom left and center), I can’t imagine how much time and effort was spent into making it. After seeing the rest of the gallery, I realized that this piece looked like several of his other works, with the swirly glass, but I liked the additional fishes, and other creatures included in the sea life piece.

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My favorite gallery was entitled Persian Ceiling, where an assortment of glass pieces were were randomly scattered on top of the ceiling. The ceiling was extremely colorful, thereby giving the whole room color by the light traveling through. Following, we entered another gallery, Mille Fiori, which is as colorful as my favorite.  I’m not quite sure what it means, but I’m assuming it has something to do with flowers or plants, as the glass sculptures seem to point in that direction. It was an interesting gallery, however I didn’t quite like it; the outer pieces were too large, kind of obscuring the view of the pieces in the middle. The Ikebana and Float Boat was another one that I quite liked because of my own fondness for colorful spheres. The Chandeliers exhibit had to be my least favorite, because most of the chandeliers looked the same, and similar to the Sea Life piece minus the ocean creatures. All the chandeliers had almost the same shape and design, only the color was noticeably different. Last of the indoor exhibits was the Macchia Forest. I don’t quite know what macchia is either, but the gallery was nice. The pieces kind of looked like fancy floor lamps. There is also a theater at the museum that plays a documentary of Chihuly and his works. (I sat for about 5 min, and wandered off, so I’m not quite sure what the documentary is exactly about or how long it is.)

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Technically speaking, the Glasshouse piece is inside, but that doesn’t really matter as the piece is really beautiful. The Glasshouse piece was really enormous in size and very interesting to look at. Some of the Garden pieces looked as if you can really find it in nature, where as some just looked out of place. The ones that don’t really belong just stick out and detract from the Glass Garden. In addition to the Garden pieces, there were some out door chandeliers. I like these better because they were more varied in shape, design and color.

My friend and I spent less than an hour at Chihuly Glass and Garden, which was a bit surprising, considering the admission cost, but it felt about right since there weren’t too many items to browse through. I’m actually a bit split on whether I liked Chihuly Glass and Garden or not. On the one hand, I liked that everything was so colorful and detailed, but on the other, a lot of the sculptures look really similar, so it seemed like I was looking at the same things sometimes. For the discounted price that I paid, I still felt it was a tad expensive because the gallery is on the smaller side, but it probably warrants the high price because it’s in a touristy location. If your a fan of art, glass art or sculptures, go take a look at Chihuly Glass and Garden, and if you’re not, still go take a look to see what plain old boring glass can become. (However, your wallet may feel lighter.)

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