Artist: Dale Chihuly
Title: Emerald Green Pilchuk Soft Cylinder
Medium: Hand Blown Glass
Dimensions: 12" x 10.75" x 12"
Inscription: Signed and dated "Chihuly 1981 Pilchuk" on bottom
Documentation: Includes gallery certificate of authenticity, full record of provenance available by request
Dale Chihuly's series of Soft Cylinders are a tangible example of the artist's endless quest for innovation. As Chihuly became more interested in asymmetry and gravity, his symmetrical cylinders began to meld into unusual, organic shapes. Instead of fighting nature, Chihuly embraced the natural movement inherent within the glassblowing process. His soft cylinders continued to incorporate the drawings that were a prominent feature in his cylinders, and in this way they serve as a type of bridge between the cylinder series and his long running basket series.
This 1981 Emerald Green Pilchuk Soft Cylinder foreshadows many design elements we would come to see from Chihuly in the years to come. While most of Chihuly's era work features a pallet of soft, muted earth tones, the choice of bold emerald green in this piece foreshadow the brighter hues we would come to see in the modern era. The use of drawings on this soft cylinder form a type of repeated pattern -with lines of increasing thickness and spacing moving from nearly straight to waved. Later, Chihuly would evolve this type of repeated pattern into the body wraps of his iconic Persian series. Most soft cylinders are small in size and somewhat narrow; however, this piece shows early evidence of Chihuly's willingness to play with scale. Measuring 12" tall and nearly 11" wide, this is a substantial piece from a point in Chihuly's career where large scale pieces were much less common than they are today.
Dale Chihuly's 1981 Emerald Green Pilchuk Soft Cylinder is signed by the artist and includes a gallery certificate of authenticity from Modern Artifact.
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.