Over the course of Dale Chihuly’s career, spanning half a century, he has expanded his vocabulary in a variety of media – blown glass, flat glass, charcoal, graphite, acrylic, watercolor, Plexiglas, canvas, neon, ice, Polyvitro. Now at seventy-five, he is creating a new body of work, painting with vitreous-glass enamel on glass panels. Dale's calling this work Glass on Glass. It is both painting and sculpture, two- and three-dimensional, transparent and opaque. Chihuly uses a specially formulated enamel composed of ground glass suspended in liquid. With his team of assistants, he paints onto prepared sheets of glass. The enamel formula allows him to move with the freedom and energy he has always brought to his two-dimensional art. After the painted sheets are fired overnight, he creates overlapping compositions that are encased within a frame. When lit, they come to life as dynamic, multidimensional paintings in color, light, and glass.
Painting and drawing have always been important vehicles for Chihuly’s creative expression, sometimes relating directly to his works in glass, but more often standing apart as independent practice. His paintings are known for their rhythm, gestural energy, color sensibility, and the evident spontaneity of their creation.
Dale’s Glass on Glass work will premiere at the Chihuly Sanctuary, part of the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, Nebraska. The Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center opens in May 2017.
Glass on Glass will debut to the public at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. This new work is part of its upcoming exhibition Chihuly: In the Gallery and in the Forest, May 27–November 13, 2017. Glass on Glass will be on view in Chihuly: In the Gallery, May 27–August 14, 2017.
View Chihuly working on Glass on Glass.