The Beauty of Chihuly

100T1062We enjoyed a beautiful, atypical summer in Seattle and spent most of our time in the great outdoors soaking in the perfect weather, from riding boats on Lake Union to attending festivals to touring local wineries and more.

My parents had long-planned to come out in mid-October for a four-day weekend and while I had crossed my fingers the weather would hold, they instead had the opportunity to experience ‘typical’ Seattle weather–gray and damp.

Despite the turn in the weather the rain held off so we still explored the Olympic Peninsula and went downtown to check out some indoor activities that have been on our list.

We drove downtown on Sunday morning (the BEST time to go because traffic and parking prices are usually reasonable) and walked to Seattle Center to visit Chihuly Garden and Glass.

100T1046We’ve walked by it many times and while I’ve been intrigued, Brian hasn’t had much interest. Our understanding of the exhibit is that a local artist, Dale Chihuly, made lots of pieces of colorful and quirky hand-blown glass and installed them in a garden. Novel, but let’s just say it hasn’t topped our list of things to do.

We went, and our minds were BLOWN!

My mom had experienced a few traveling pieces of the exhibit and really wanted to go so she bought our tickets in advance. We parked and arrived 15+ minutes before they opened and there were people already lined up out the door.

The place was packed the whole time we were there, and the crowd was incredibly diverse– from kids to families to tour groups and everything in between. 

100T1042We weren’t totally incorrect in our understanding of the exhibit, but we were completely wrong in thinking that was all there was to it.

Here’s what we learned:

  • Glass blowing is an incredible art, and Chihuly created his own unique style that is now studied all over the world
  • He has installed global exhibits, everywhere from the Venice canals to the Jerusalem Tower of David
  • While he goes have some pieces installed in an outdoor garden, the majority of the exhibit is actually indoors and absolutely stunning
  • There are videos about his work that outline the history of his craft, some of his projects and his current work

Even if you think art and gardens are not for you (they are not usually for us), I challenge you to visit this exhibit anyway. It is breathtaking and not at all what we imagined– quite frankly, I loved it.

If you’re still not convinced, here are a few pictures we took, which don’t remotely do Chihuly’s work justice.

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