Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Visit Atlanta's 'Chihuly in the Garden' By October 30!

What better way to utilize public grounds within city limits than to establish spectacular gardens, such as Atlanta, GA has done with their Botanical Garden?  An oasis in the midst of urban chaos, the Atlanta Botanical Garden is celebrating their 40th anniversary this year. Bringing Dale Chihuly's glass artwork as an integrated exhibit among its gardens for its celebratory occasion, you must go before October 30 if you want to see it. I was very excited to see the exhibit in late September and, just in case you do not get to attend, allow me to take you on a virtual tour now!
L: Nepenthes Chandelier; R: Blue and White
A couple of Chihuly's works are permanent to Atlanta's Botanical Garden collection, including those pictured above. On the left frame is the Nepenthes Chandelier, located in the Hardin Visitor Center upon entry into the gardens. Pictured on the right is Blue and White, located in the Levy Parterre garden.
Indigo Blue Icicle Tower
Walking along with the exhibit map, I knew I was going to be amazed, as I had previously seen photos a niece of mine had taken from a summer visit, as well as at least one other blogger's.
Earth Goddess with Fiori Boat and Niijima Floats
Incredible as Chihuly's elements were, it was the beautiful coordination with the existing plantings that made this exhibit so special. The notable Earth Goddess sculpture is just one of those areas where the installation really was outstanding.

In the photo below, you catch a glimpse of yet another brilliant way in which Chihuly's work was showcased. Note the bridge structure to the left of the Earth Goddess' head. That's a walkway within the grounds, upon which Chihuly's Trumpet Flower Arbor was installed.

Below is the garden's walkway once upon it, and the glass art above it.
The photo below shows the Trumpet Flower Arbor as viewed when looking at it from the ground.
Trumpet Flower Arbor
Some of the installations were very subtle in placement, almost blending into the environment and/or the plantings.
Fern Dell Paintbrushes
It would be hard for me to choose one work I preferred over others. We arrived just after the gardens opened at 9am, so the sunlight and dappled shade really made the works even more spectacular.
Green Hornets and Waterdrops, Neodymium Reeds
I can't imagine this exhibit being any more beautiful, yet it also has an evening hours separate from daytime operational hours, where the installations are showcased with special lighting.
Water Mirror with Saffron Tower
The hardscapes in the Botanical Garden are also outstanding. There are places to rest, dine, explore, and get lost (yes, we took a couple wrong turns, even with the exhibit map).
There were also Chihuly artworks inside the Orchid Center. Among the rainforest environment, the glass blended almost seamlessly, as if the installations grew there.
Top: Ikenbana; Bottom: Black and Green Striped Herons with Icicle Clusters
Clockwise from top L: Ikebana; Sapphire Neon with Neodymium Reeds, Floats, and Logs; Sapphire Star, White Belugas
Three Graces Tower; Red Reeds, Zebra Reeds
Turquoise Marlins and Floats
There was a Japanese garden (pictured above), a Children's garden, and even an edible garden within the Botanical Garden's walls. The day we were there, the edible gardens were being worked by (this is an educated guess) several Master Gardeners. A requirement to maintain certification as a Master Gardener is to provide documented volunteer service hours, and there appeared to be several people being given direction in that section.
One of the best surprises of going to the Atlanta Botanical Garden was Mr. P.'s reaction: he loved it! He would normally be bored out of his mind with just walking and looking, but he thoroughly enjoyed not only the exhibit, but the well-designed, overall appeal of the gardens.

Although this exhibit will soon end, there was staff already preparing for its holiday lights season. The gardens also hold special events and allow private rentals. I provided a link to the Botanical Garden's website above if you'd like to find more information. I highly recommend a visit there. I hope to someday visit Chihuly Garden and Glass in the Seattle (Washington) Center, Chihuly's native state. I know some of my blog friends have, and it looks amazing.

If you don't get to see this exhibit, I hope I've done it justice for you through my photos. Thanks for your visit here today.
Rita C. at Panoply

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