July 4 marks the beginning of an entire year's worth of glass art exhibitions in Columbus. Seven organizations are hosting glass art programs - three featuring the works of Dale Chihuly, and many at the same time:
- Franklin Park Conservatory: Chihuly Reimagined (July 4-March 28)
- OSU Urban Arts Space and Hawk Galleries: BIGG: Breakthrough Ideas in Global Glass (July 10-Oct. 10)
- Upper Arlington's Concourse Gallery: Melting Pot (July 22-Aug. 21)
- Columbus Museum of Art: Chihuly Illuminated (Sept. 25-July 4)
- Hawk Galleries: Chihuly XIV (Oct. 2-Jan. 31)
- The King Arts Complex: African Art: Tradition and Influence (Nov. 12-Dec. 15)
- Glass Axis : glass workshops (ongoing)
This weekend, the anticipated Chihuly Reimagined opens at the Franklin Park Conservatory . The Conservatory's entire collection of Chihuly glasswork is on display throughout the facility, along with three brand new installations.
I was lucky enough to preview the exhibit and it definitely lives up to the hype. The contrast of the bold Chihuly glass among lush foliage is spectacular. My two favorites were the hundreds of blue reeds in the courtyard and a rowboat upstairs in the showhouse that is filled with gorgeous purple and blue glass.
Although most pieces have been on display at the Conservatory before, some of the work has been positioned differently, changing the light and bringing a fresh perspective. For instance, the Persian Ceiling is now in the Himalayan zone. It's in two sections that are much closer to eye level, so you can see parts you never noticed before.
Next week, the OSU Urban Arts Space in the old Lazarus building and Hawk Galleries (a few blocks away at the corner of Main and Fourth streets) open a really intriguing exhibit of international glass artists entitled BIGG: Breakthrough Ideas in Global Glass . This is juried exhibition of master-level artists (or the equivalent in their country) and really represents the future of glass art.
On July 22, Melting Pot opens at the Concourse Gallery, followed by the rest . . .
For details on each exhibition and photos, visit GlassArt365.com .