Artist: Dale Chihuly
Medium: Charcoal on paper
Size: 24.5” x 22”
Date: Circa 1998-1999
Condition: Very good condition overall, please request a condition report for full details
Documentation: Comes will gallery certificate of authenticity and a complete record of provenance
The American glass sculptor Dale Chihuly is best known for using innovative techniques for handblown glass. And, though primarily known for his asymmetrical and irregular vessels, his drawing and paintings are essential aspects of his practice. Chihuly initially used sketches to share his ideas with his glassblowing team after losing sight in his left eye. However, over the years, painting and drawing evolved from just being a communication tool but being another medium where he could explore light.
Just like his early glassworks, his first drawings were subdued and used charcoal and graphite. They became bolder and more colorful as he explored other materials. Chihuly’s paintings and drawings capture his flow of ideas and energy through his sweeping gestural motions. They embody the spontaneity and immediacy found in his glasswork through colors applied in layers. The dynamic and energetic illustrations usually serve as precursors to his glassworks or as standalone pieces. Chihuly has often stated that both glasswork and drawings go together and inform each other.
Untitled most likely illustrates a model for one of the Chihuly’s Venetians. In 1988, an experiment between artist and Italian maestro glassblower Lino Tagliapietra resulted in his Venetian series. Chihuly used sketches to convey to Tagliapietra what he wanted to create. He sketched the classical form with various handles. Furthermore, charcoal allowed Chihuly to be bold with his ideas. Just like the associated glasswork series, this artwork juxtaposes traditional and contemporary art practices.
Untitled is an actual drawing done by Chihuly that was used as a “blueprint” for making a “Piccolo Venetian with Leaves”. This drawing would have been hung above the glass ovens for his glass team to use as their model in making this piece as he designed. Untitled includes a gallery certificate of authenticity. The work is not signed. Furthermore, the artwork is in very good condition overall. Please request a condition report for full details.
About Dale Chihuly:
One of the most famous contemporary glass artists in the world, Dale Chihuly is best known for his monumental sculptures and installations. He is the name behind the spectacular ceiling at the Bellagio’s flower garden in Las Vegas and the creator of the Rotunda Chandelier at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Glass works of Dale Chihuly are considered some of the most desired collectibles between the decorative arts devotees today.
Despite his initial indifference towards education, Chihuly has spent a lot of time in school, obtaining both scientific and artistic degree in sculpture from prestigious graduate schools. He displayed a proclivity for interior design and craft early on, but his true passion was always in the glass. He was a Fulbright Fellow in the late 1960s and an apprentice at the Venini Glass Factory in Venice. Mastering the art of Murano glasswork, he continued the experiments with glassblowing and thus became one of the people who brought the ancient art of glassblowing back into the spotlight on an international scale.
Monumental and small-scale artwork of Dale Chihuly is present in over 200 most renowned decorative art collections today, while the artist holds twelve honorary doctorates!
The most illustrious series in his work are Cylinders and Baskets he created in the 1970s; Macchia, Venetians, and Persians from the 1980s, Niijima Floats and Chandeliers created in the 1990s; and a more recent one, Fiori from the 2000s.
For over 30 years, Dale Chihuly has been acting as an artistic director of his team of craftsmen, since he was incapacitated in two accidents, which left him blind in one eye and incapable of holding the blowing tube. This change allowed him to see the possibilities of glass work on a broader scale, while still maintaining his recognizable style.