While I never would have considered an artist who bases his work in Washington state to have such a large presence in Florida, the Dale Chihuly Collection at the Morean Arts Center in St. Petersburg, FL is one of the best exhibitions I’ve ever been to and certainly one of the coolest.
First off, the museum was designed and organized by a local architect Albert Alfonso and Dale Chihuly himself. The fact that the artist had an input as to how the exhibition would be put together is a statement for the present-day artist and audience.
The artist’s own input and design brings the audience significantly closer to the concepts, vitality, and genuine perception of the art being shown. That is not to say that museums such as the Dali Museum, which is right down the street from the Chihuly Collection, aren’t exceptional.
However, there is a certain distance between the artist, the work, and the audience when paintings and sculptures are put up in chronological or relevant order with tiny plaques explaining a fraction of the significance of a piece.
Going to see art shouldn’t always have to be an archaeological excursion. There is an excitement in discovering the past, but there is also excitement in being brought to the present to discover the close connections that art and the every day world have in common.
Connections such as current events and ingenious techniques only made possible by living in the time period of today, put
our lives into a perspective that we may not have noticed otherwise. As art is a reflection of society, the individuals living in that society, and the motivation behind such creations, it is important to understand the value of both the old and the new.
Alright, I meant for this post to be a bit more informative on the techniques and history of Dale Chihuly’s work, but it must be saved for later. Until next time!