Luminous: Dale Chihuly and
the Studio Glass Movement
February 23–June 23, 2019
Luminous explores the studio glass movement that has found international prominence in the Pacific Northwest. Partnering with Tacoma’s Museum of Glass and Portland-based collector George Stroemple, the MAC presents its first all-glass art exhibition.
Luminous features 33 international artists working in glass, including Dale Chihuly. Chihuly has been a leader in the studio glass movement for five decades, exploring new and old techniques and pushing the boundaries of contemporary art. Inspired by the world around him, he creates statements using color and form to capture the imagination and move beyond conventional ideas of function and beauty. His work is included in over 200 museum collections worldwide and he has been the recipient of multiple awards, including two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1971, he cofounded the Pilchuck Glass School in Stanwood, WA. With this international glass center, Chihuly has served as a leader of the movement to develop glass as a fine art medium, attracting many international glass artists to the region.
The Museum of Glass, which opened in 2002, has become one of the preeminent glass museums in the world, building a spectacular collection that chronicles the development of modern and contemporary glass. It will loan the MAC over 40 works by internationally renowned artists from Asia, Europe and Australia, as well as some of the best known regional artists such as Preston Singletary and Joe Feddersen.
The Museum of Glass collection will be complemented by Chihuly works from the George Stroemple Collection in Portland. The Laguna Murano Chandelier (1996), considered Chihuly’s most important chandelier, will travel to Spokane for the exhibition. The five-piece installation was created in Venice with two other glass masters, Lino Tagliapietra and Pino Signoretto, and is comprised of five components: two are hung from the ceiling and three are installed on standing armatures. This piece, as well as others in the exhibition, will engage visitors with their beauty and scale and will reveal the dynamic and experimental techniques that drive contemporary glass makers to greater artistic achievements.
Also on display will be seven pieces from Chihuly’s Macchia series in which he explores unexpected color combinations using all 300 colors in his hotshop, adding brightly colored spots (Macchia is Italian for spot) for a speckled effect. “I put one color on the inside, then sort of a translucent or opaque white in the middle, and then another color on the outside. I loved the…ones that seemed to make the least amount of sense, like the really crazy ones—purple and chartreuse,” Chihuly has said.
Other pieces by well-known glass artists include one of Dante Marioni’s sinuous, elongated leaf vessels, the boxlike “paintings” of Therman Statom, the wow factor of Maestro Lino Tagliapietra’s Manhattan Sunset installation, and a whimsical flock of blue-footed boobies by Erich Woll.
Visitors to Luminous will be amazed and delighted not only by the variety of subjects in the exhibition but also the transformative nature of glass itself.
Luminous was produced in partnership with
The George R. Stroemple Collection
An S&S Collaboration
With additional support from:
Joel E. Ferris Foundation
Carl M. Hansen Foundation