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September 27, 2012: Prudence and Nancy at the Arboretum
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October 1, 2012
"Chihuly at Night"
at the Dallas Arboretum


Well, as if we haven't seen the Chihuly Exhibit at the Dallas Arboretum three times already (first with Rudolf, then with Guy and lastly with Prudence and Nancy), we are going yet again. But this time it will be different; we are going to see the installations lit up at night. This is a special event at the Gardens, and is extra even for members. But it is supposed to be quite something, so we are going to make the trek this evening.


Getting to the Dallas Arboretum

The Dallas Arboretum is not too far from where I live over on Inwood- I'd guess about six or seven miles as the crow flies (see the map opposite)- but you can't get there as the crow flies because White Rock Lake is in the way. So you can either go through town and wind your way around the south end of the lake or you can take Mockingbird over around the north side of the lake. Today, we just took Mockingbird over to Buckner Boulevard to Garland Road and the Arboretum.

In this closer view, you can see the south end of White Rock Lake and you can pick out the bike trail that hugs the lake shore almost all the way around. At the south end is White Rock Lake Dam and spillway, which takes the overflow water and sends it under Garland Road to continue on down to the Trinity River.

The bike path used to cross the top of the dam, but for one reason or another, the bike path was rerouted a year ago, and now it goes through some parkland and playing fields south of the dam, across the spillway, up Garland Road for a ways, and then back north along the lake shore.

You can also see a closer view of the Arboretum in this picture, and can begin to pick out some of the pathways through the gardens.

Finally, in this close-up of the Arboretum itself, you can see most of the major features- including the parking area just off Garland Road, the new administrative buildings, the restaurant and gift shop (all right near the parking lot) and, off in the middle of the gardens, the DeGolyer house (the former residence of the family that donated the land for the Arboretum to the Arboretum Society.

You can also see the maze of pathways that criss-cross the gardens.

We usually make a circular transit of the entire Arboretum each time we visit; this enables us to see everything with a minimum of backtracking. This evening, we are adding the hope to see each of the Chihuly installations after dark- when it is lit up. I know that is probably not important for you to know where in the gardens each of the Chihuly installations is located, but I always think it is interesting to let you follow along with us on a map or diagram. Below is a large diagram of the Dallas Arboretum, with our general route marked in yellow and the major gardens noted in red.

Our route this evening will be a bit different. We arrived when it was still quite light, but didn't want to just sit around waiting for darkness, so we started off on pretty much our usual route. By the time we got to the back of the Gardens (in the Lay Ornamental Garden) it had gotten dark enough for the glass installations and their lighting to stand out. We circled back by the installations we'd already passed to see them once again now that their lighting was on.

Rather that have two circuits of the gardens, I am going to combine them into one, and if we happened to take pictures of a certain installation both in the daylight and at night, I'll put both in the same section. This will avoid a great deal of repetition, and might well be interesting when you see the same piece in daylight and at night.

So let's head off from the parking area into the Arboretum to experience "Chihuly at Night".


Cissy Thomsen Welcoming Water Wall

We came across the first installation even before we had entered the Arboretum.

Installation Name: Blue Icicles

"Blue Icicles"

Beside the stairway down to the entrance from the parking area, there is a small waterfall, although I never knew it had a name. That was where we found the first installation, as shown on the diagram below:

In 1996, Chihuly developed an element for his Icicle Creek Chandelier that he hoped could withstand the snowy winters and hot summers of Central Washington state. The resulting icicle form, both beautiful and sturdy, has become a favorite of the artist in a number of outdoor installations since then. One icicle part in your hand is remarkably heavy. Wherever they are placed outdoors, and no matter what the color, the add a startling visual punch. Here at the Arboretum, clear, turquoise and cobalt icicles reflect the Texas sunlight in dramatic fashion. Before we entered the Arboretum proper, I took one more picture of Fred with the Blue Icicles.


Ginsburg Plaza

We crossed the driveway, went through the Member's entrance and came into the Arboretum proper.

The entry point here at the Arboretum is the Ginsburg Plaza, which is situated between the restaurant, gift shop and educational center.

With the pumpkins and gourds having arrived for Fall and Pumpkin village, Ginsburg Plaza was lined with them. Click on the thumbnails below to see what the plaza looked like:

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A Look Around Ginsburg Plaza

I made a movie while we had some light here in Ginsburg Plaza, and you can watch it with the player at right.

Fred also took some additional pictures of the beautiful pumpkin and gourd decorations all around the plaza, and you can use the clickable thumbnails below to have a look at a few of them:

Installation Name: Mexican Hat and Horn Tower

"Mexican Hat and Horn Tower" (Day)

"Mexican Hat and Horn Tower" (Night)

Mexico was one of the countries where Chihuly blew glass during the Chihuly Over Venice project and the red forms in the Mexican Hat and Horn Tower were devised there. Often, he and the team will invent a new shape for the Chandeliers or Towers and the new parts will take on a nickname- in this case, "Mexican Hats."

I want to include one more picture of Fred with the Mexican Hat and Horn Tower.


The Palmer Fern Dell

The Palmer Fern Dell is located just north of the Ginsburg Plaza, down some steps from the northwest end of the plaza. This brings you to the west end of the Fern Dell, and we walked eastward through it.

The Eugenia Leftwich Palmer Fern Dell, designed by Naud Burnett, is an enchanting mini-garden located within the Jonsson Color Garden. More than 90 varieties of ferns, camellias, witch hazel, azaleas and mature trees border a meandering brook. The Palmer Fern Dell is a welcome oasis during the summer months as a micro-fine mist system regularly envelops the garden.

Here, we found the first of many installations of a genre that Chihuly calls, simply, "Garden Glass." These were tall, slender grass-like shapes, sometimes straight and sometimes with curliques at the top. The color seemed to complement the place in the garden where they were located. Usually, they had different names.

Installation Name: Blue Marlins

"Blue Marlins"

Garden Glass reflects the artist's affinity for plant-like forms. "There's something about the fluidity of glass that makes it want to make forms from nature", Chihuly said. "My forms are made in a very natural way, using fire, gravity, and centrifugal force, so they look like they come from nature. But I don't look at pictures of plants and say now I'm going to make one that looks like that."

I've put clickable thumbnails below for some additional views of the Blue Marlins; Fred's are close-up and mine show the setting:

Installation Name: Turquoise Reeds

"Turquoise Reeds"

In addition to the Blue Marlins, the fern dell also contained three sets of the Turquoise Reeds. Chihuly made the first Reeds at the Hackman factory in Nuutajarvi, a small glassblowing town in Finland. Unlike other factories, the Hackman facility has very high ceilings, which inspired Chihuly to make these elongated forms. To create the long tubular shape of a Reed, one glassblower must be elevated in a mechanical lift while blowing through the pipe to encourage the form to stretch, while another pulls the glass toward the ground. As Chihuly said, "In Finland we started making these long, cylindrical pieces which loojked like spears. This was an exciting new form. It was the first time we ever made anything like that. They can be taken anywhere; they can go outside. They are very strong pieces, and they are very dramatic."

Both the different installations were very pretty, and their deep blue color suited the deep shade of the fern dell. You can see me with the Turquoise Reeds here.


The Jonsson Color Garden

The next installations were in the large Jonsson Color Garden north of the Fern Dell.

The Jonsson Color Garden is a broad, lawn in three ovals, and each oval is surrounded by interlocking walkways. The are shaped flower beds at various locations along the outside of the ovals; these are always planted with colorful flowers of the season, and on the north side of the garden are a wide variety of azaleas. The center of the lawns is pretty much open, and is a great place for picnics or for families with kids.

Here, we found a number of different Chihuly glass installations.

Installation Name: Yellow Icicle Tower

"Yellow Icicle Tower" (Day)

"Yellow Icicle Tower" (Night)

The Yellow Icicle Tower shoots up 30 feet and is a perfect example of Chihuly's desire to mass color for dramatic effect. The combined elements create what Chihuly once described as "a core of color." Among the things for which Chihuly is most known are his monumental blown glass sculptures like this one. Below is another pair of day/night views:

This installation is the tallest in the gardens, and you can see it from a long ways away.

Fred happened to get two closeup shots of the Yellow Icicle Tower this afternoon and even and, even though it might be overkill, I'd like to include the pair here. Those are the two pictures at left. You can easily see how many individual glass icicles had to be created and attached for this sculpture.

I also want to include a single picture of Fred and I in front of the Yellow Icicle Tower; you can see that picture here.

Installation Name: Cattails and Silvered Red Bamboo

An example of Chihuly's Garden Glass series, the Cattails and Silvered Red Bamboo are based on plant-like forms, and this was just one instance of this form in the gardens. Below are views of this particular installation in the daytime and at night:

This installation was a combination of two forms- the tall, slender, straight cattail form, and the more plant-like bamboo. There are clickable thumbnails below that you can use to see some additional pictures of this installation, both in daylight and at night:

Installation Name: Tiger Lillies

"Tiger Lillies" at Night

Chihuly's Tiger Lillies are another of his plant-like forms. You've seen a number of them already. While they are quite similar, the artist has taken pains to add touches that will recall the particular type of plant being created. In this installation, the curved top to the blown glass recalls the flowerhead of the lily.

Today, we didn't happen to take any pictures of the Tiger Lillies installation in the daytime, but you have probably seen one on a previous page. The picture at left was, of course, taken after sundown.

Fred did get another excellent night view of this installation, and you can see it here. And below are clickable thumbnails for some additional nighttime pictures that I took:

Installation Name: Niijima Floats

These large spheres- up to 40 inches in diameter and 60 pounds- have surfaces richly colored with gold and silver leaf and foil. They are named for Japanese fishing floats Chihuly found as a child on the shores of Puget Sound and the island of Niijima, Japan, which Chihuly visited around 1990. This particular installation was tough to photograph at night, for the glass globes were not lit from inside, but rather from indirect lighting nearby.

"Niijima Floats" (Day)

"Niijima Floats" (Night)

As you can see in two of Fred's daytime pictures of the Niijima Floats (you can see them here and here), Chihuly has colored them to blend in with the color scheme where they have been placed. Here is a picture of Fred with the nighttime Niijima Floats.


A Woman's Garden

The next few installations were in a relatively new area of the Arboretum- the large Woman's Garden that has been created in the area between the DeGolyer House and White Rock Lake.

This 1.8-acre formal garden, which opened to national acclaim in 1997, was a gift to the Arboretum by its Women's Council. Designed by landscape architect Morgan Wheelock, it is comprised of several small garden "rooms". The dramatic focal point is a reflecting pool that provides a water-on-water view overlooking tranquil White Rock Lake.

The main entrance to the garden is through the portal at the northeast end of the Jonsson Color Garden; this brings the visitor to the top of a stairstepped water feature that leads down into the garden. Small channels of water surround the plain grass center of the area. Steps lead up from this garden to the DeGolyer House.

Installation Name: Scarlet Asymmetrical Tower and Yellow Asymmetrical Tower

From the Jonsson Color Garden, we could look northeast towards the entrance to the Woman's Garden, and we could see the two Chihuly asymmetrical towers flanking the entrance. The Asymmetrical Towers were first exhibited outside of the magnificent Palm House at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, near London in 2005. Here in Dallas, the Towers welcome the viewer to come explore A Woman's Garden. Also, with this installation, the artist reminds us that liveliness and natural form comes from asymmetry.

"Scarlet Asymmetrical Tower"

We did not photograph the Towersnext installation extensively while the sun was still up, perhaps because we'd gotten so many pictures on earlier visits. In fact, the only daytime picture we took was Fred's closeup of one of the towers (shown at right). There are a pair of these towers, with the curled glass elements attached together and the entire sculpture raised on a metal pole, that flank the Woman's Garden entrance.

You can see their position in a photograph we took a bit later from down inside the Woman's Garden looking back across another Chihuly installation towards that entrance. You can see that photo here.

When we returned after dark, we came up to the towers from the garden itself, and you can see Fred with the pair of them in the background in a picture I took from down in the garden. Then we walked up and out of the garden to see the Towers from the other side. They were indeed pretty spectacular all lit up, as you can see in one of Fred's closeups here. Trying to get them both in one picture was tough, so I composed a panorama of the two of them out of three different pictures; you can see that view below:

Going through the portal, we find ourselves at the upper fountain at the beginning of the stairstepped water feature leading downwards. We came through the Woman's Garden twice this evening- first when it was still light and then second on our way back to the entrance after it had gotten dark. So you'll see both daytime and nighttime pictures.

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Coming Into the Woman's Garden at Night

Just inside the portal to the Woman's Garden there is a square fountain that is the beginning of the water feature that leads down to another rectangular pool in which the next Chihuly installation can be found. Before we descended to the bottom, Fred got a picture of me with the Woman's Garden in the background. At the bottom of this watercourse was a Chihuly installation called Neodymium Reeds.

Of course, our purpose in coming to the Arboretum yet again was to experience it at night, so let's return to the top of the water feature and descend down into the garden- but this time at night. That's what I filmed when we returned, and you can watch that movie with the player at left.

Installation Name: Neodymium Reeds

"Neodymium Reeds" (Day)

"Neodymium Reeds" (Night)

Chihuly made the first Reeds in Finland, and these are the same tall, thin sculptures that we would find throughout the garden, in different colors to complement their location. These long, cylindrical pieces look like spears stuck in the ground, and Chihuly is fond of using them in outdoor installations both for their durability and their dramatic effect. These reeds have another, different sculpture at their base (a piece that was unnamed). In addition to the pictures above, Fred took two daytime pictures on our first visit, and two more nighttime pictures on our way back; there are clickable thumbnails for these pictures below:

Installation Name: Aqua Blue and Amber Chandelier

"Aqua Blue and Amber Chandelier"

The Aqua Blue and Amber Chandelier is actually located in The Poetry Garden, which is a small sunken garden between the Woman's Garden and White Rock Lake. We always consider it a part of the Woman's Garden, because all you have to do is turn to your left from where the Neodymium Reeds installation was located, walk over to the balcony, and look down into it. But technically, it is a separate Garden. Chiluly has been creating his Chandeliers for many years; originally, they were actually hung from ceilings- just like actual chandeliers. But he had often wanted to use them elsewhere, and so during his 1995-96 Chihuly Over Venice project the artist devised an armature he titled a "quadpod" to support and display some of the Chandeliers from the ground, when hanging them in various historic areas was not posible. As you can see, this technique also works outdoors.

When we returned later in the evening to get this picture, we actually re-entered the Woman's Garden by way of the steps down from the DeGolyer Home, You can see the nighttime view from the top of those steps here. The Neodymium Reeds are at the left, the Mirrored Hornets at the right and the Aqua Blue and Amber Chandelier in the sunken Poetry Garden ahead at the end of the walk.

Installation Name: Mirrored Hornets

"Mirrored Hornets" (Day)

"Mirrored Hornets" (Night)

In a second rectangular pool east of the Neodymium Reeds is an installation called the Mirrored Hornets. For the Mirrored Hornets, molten glass is blown into a spiral mold to make the Hornet form. The glassblower must literally unscrew the hot glass to remove the form from the mold.

There are three more pictures that I'd like you to see; Fred took the first one before dark and the second two when we returned. You can use the clickable thumbnails below to have a look at them:

Installation Names: Float Boat and Carnival Boat

The next two installations were both in the infinity pool at the east end of the Woman's Garden, and they were both strikingly beautiful- actually more so in the daytime. They were called Float Boat and Carnival Boat, and you can see them both in the daytime here.

"Float Boat"

Chihuly first filled boats with his glass elements in Nuutajarvi, Finland during the Chihuly Over Venice project in June 1995. After several days of glass blowing in the hotshop, the team made temporary installations along the Nuutakoki, the river nearby. For the Float Boat, Chihuly simply filled a boat with the spherical sculptures that he floated in water (like we saw in St. Louis, and which you can see here) or simply laid in gardens (like the Niijima Floats that you saw in the Jonsson Color Garden). It would perhaps have been prettier if the globes had been lit from underneath for the Float Boat at night, but instead they were lit with spotlights from the side of the pool.

"Carnival Boat"

Chihuly created the Carnival Boat in essentially the same way, except that he filled the boat this time with the same parts that are used in his Chandelier series. This boat looked better lit up at night as you can see below:


The Grotto

The Grotto is a small, shaded garden with a water feature; it is located at the foot of the Red Maple Rill, between the Rill and White Rock Lake. It is a secluded garden, with a number of benches beside the water feature, and is a great place to sit and relax.

Installation Name: Persian Pond

The next installation we came to was in the pool that is part of the rock-lined water feature in The Grotto. Chihuly began his Persians series in 1986 as a search for new forms, always for Chihuly being a vehicle for color. Early works in the series were oddly shaped and intensely colored but were soon transformed. As Chihuly continued to expand and modify his Persians, he began to see their potential for large, dramatic installations.

I took a daytime picture on our first visit to the Grotto this evening; on our way back, after dark, only one of the pictures of the Persian Pond at night came out well (the glass flowers were not brightly-lit); those daytime and nighttime pictures are below:

"Persian Pond" (Day)

"Persian Pond" (Night)


The Boswell Garden/Magnolia Allee/McCasland Garden

In the area between the DeGolyer Home and the new Red Maple Rill there is a series of small gardens and walkways.

Below are some clickable thumbnails for some pictures we took here in the daytime:

The first picture in the first row at left was taken in the McCasland Sunken Garden, which opened March 2006. When entering from the DeGolyer or south entry, visitors are greeted by a procession of Italian jardiničres and geometric patterns shaded by towering trees. The central aisle steps down to the sunlit grass court's congregational space.

The other three were taken in the Boswell Family Garden. This beautiful garden comprises the area north of the McCasland Sunken Garden with the gazebo, octagonal fountain and Magnolia Allee serving as natural boundaries.

As guests enter the garden from the octagonal fountain (near which the installation below is located), an overlook offers a beautiful, unexpected view of the area. A wall provides the backbone of the garden, with a series of circular buttresses covered with red cascade rose trellises. Symmetrical, serpentine plantings mirrored by topiary hollies surround a circular lawn area. Cubed topiary hedges and a red and yellow-leafed barberry hedge in a double-helix configuration align the existing walk to the McCasland Sunken Garden.

Installation Name: Citron Green and Red Tower

"Citron Green and Red Tower" (Day)

"Citron Green and Red Tower" (Night)

Chihuly's Towers evolved from his Chandeliers. In 1992, he began massing blown glass forms on steel armatures to create large, hanging sculptures. Subsequent projects challenged Chihuly to Create large sculptures in spaces where the ceilings could not bear the weight of his Chandeliers, or where there were no ceilings at all from which to hang them (such as in an outdoor garden). This gave rise to the Towers.

The two constrasting colors of the Citron Green and Red Tower provide an additional playful pop of color among the vivid Dallas Arboretum blooms.


The Red Maple Rill

The Nancy Rutchik Red Maple Rill is one of the Arboretum's newest gardens.

The Red Maple Rill, which opened on October 6, 2011, has a much different beauty than the areas where colorful plants are found. With its gentle slope and shaded artificial stream, it's almost as if you aren't in Dallas anymore, but in the mountains somewhere. The main design elements include a new entry off the Paseo de Flores, plus a large gathering plaza. A meandering creek with numerous waterfalls flows down the hillside, ending in a large pond. About halfway down the hill a stone bridge crosses the stream, connecting the paved walkways around the Rill with the Martin Rutchik Concert Lawn and the Magnolia Allee. At the crossing there is a small plaza, which is a great place to sit and enjoy the beauty of the Rill.

“The most impressive feature is a fabulous collection of over 80 varieties of 200 Japanese Maples,” commented Dave Forehand, Vice President of Gardens. “Two hundred trees are planted up and down the stream with an understory planting beneath the canopy. An especially large weeping Japanese maple nearly 100 years in age anchors the center of this new garden area.”

The Red Maple Rill increases the Dallas Arboretum’s collection of Acer species and cultivars to over 120 varieties. Not only is this garden a beautiful serene oasis along the Paseo, but is also a horticulturally important garden with an impressive collection of Maple species and cultivars.

Installation Name: Blue Polyvitro Crystals

The installation of the Blue Polyvitro Crystals is one of the few Chihuly sculptures that is not made of glass; in fact, the crystals are made of plastic- although they are inspired by and creating using glass. There were a series of them in the Red Maple Rill stream. Chihuly may have had th eancient stories of the old fortress in Jerusalem in mind when he developed the idea of using large crystals as a form for outdoor sculptures. The first solidly cast plastic crystals were taken from molds of cullet- broken chunks of glass retrieved from the bottom of a furnace. Polyvitro crystals were first used on the Crystal Mountain in the exhibition Chihuly in the Light of Jerusalem (1999).

The term "polyvitro" was coined by Chihuly as a name for any material used in his projects that is actually made of plastic, and created through this glass-molding process. The first crystals he made were blue, and this became their signature color. By 2005 the same large blue crystals were floated in lakes and ponds as part of Chihuly's garden exhibitions. We did see the crystals while it was still light, but when we returned this way they were not lit up.

Installation Name: Sun

Chihuly's Sun is a radiant, 14-foot diameter globe of red, orange and yellow glass branches curling outward from its center. Massed together, the hundreds of twisting glass elements create a powerful effect. Chihuly has said, "No other material gives you color like glass does. No othe rmaterial has the ability to take in light and radiate out color like glass."

"Sun" (at dusk)

"Sun" (night)

The installation sits at the edge of the Martin Rutchik Concert Lawn, just on the lawn side of the bridge that crosses the Rill. It does indeed look like a small sun that has descended to touch the earth. I would like to include one more nighttime picture- a closeup of Sun.

It was while we were near Sun on the concert lawn that the sun actually set, and we sat on the lawn, watching it go down and taking pictures as it did. Below are clickable thumbnails for some of our sunset pictures:

From this point on, all our pictures were either at dusk or at night, and so the daytime/nighttime comparisons will end here. If you want to see more of the Chihuly glass sculptures in the daytime, visit one of the previous pages detailing our visits to the Arboretum with either Rudolf or with Prudence and Nancy.


Lay Ornamental Garden

The Lay Ornamental Garden is a favorite place of ours, not in small measure due to the three waterfalls that form its backdrop.

The Lay Ornamental Garden is a 2.2-acre Texas cottage garden, filled with hundreds of perennials and a dynamic falling water curtain set against native limestone walls. It was designed for Mrs. Amelia (Mimi) Lay Hodges in honor of her husband, Herman Lay. The garden also is home to a collection of bronze wildlife figures nestled throughout it; these were donated by the Trammell Crow Family.

Both the Lay and Trammel Crow families are major participants in Dallas philanthropy. Trammel Crow began as a small property owner and Realtor, and his companies expanded to become a leading name in office rental properties and new construction nationwide. Herman Lay, who died in 1982, began as a Pepsi-Cola bottler in Mexico, and expanded into snack foods in the 1950s. His name is currently one-half of the famous Frito-Lay snack empire which, in a not-so-odd turn, is part of PepsiCo- Herman Lay's first employer. Both men and their families have also been involved with the Morton Myerson Symphony Hall. The Trammel Crow family continues to sponsor concerts, and a branch of the Lay family donated the huge pipe organ that is the pride of the Myerson.

Installation Name: Fiori Sun

"What makes the Fiori Sun work for me," Chihuly said, "is the massing of color. If you take a thousand blown pieces of a color, put them together, and then shoot light through them, now that's going to be something to look at." I do have two contrasting pictures of this installation, one taken just after sunset and one a half-hour later:

"Fiori Sun" (at dusk)

"Fiori Sun" (twilight)

I'd also like to include a pretty amazing extreme closeup that Fred took of just a small portion of this sculpture. It clearly shows the ribbed, curved, colored glass to be the delicate structure it is. You can have a look at that picture here.

Installation Name: Blue Bulbous Reeds

"Blue Bulbous Reeds"

The Blue Bulbous Reeds here in the Lay Garden are yet another example of the reed form that Chihuly first made in Finland. Had that factory not had very high ceilings, Chihuly might not have been inspired to make these elongated forms. To create the long tubular shape of a Reed, one glassblower must be elevated in a mechanical lift while blowing through the pipe to encourage the form to stretch, while another pulls the glass toward the ground. As Chihuly said, "In Finland we started making these long, cylindrical pieces which loojked like spears. This was an exciting new form. It was the first time we ever made anything like that. They can be taken anywhere; they can go outside. They are very strong pieces, and they are very dramatic."

Installation Names:   Neodymium and Blue Reeds
Blue and Pink Marlins

At the back of the Lay Garden are three waterfalls, and each of them had a different Chihuly installation in them. The first two had the Neodymium and Blue Reeds and the Blue and Pink Marlins, respectively.

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"Neodymium and Blue Reeds"
"Blue and Pink Marlins"

I think a good way to see these two installations is to watch the movie I made of them; you can do so with the player at left.

As far as pictures go, I took one of Fred with the Blue and Pink Marlins, and Fred took a few of both the Reeds and the Marlins; you can use the clickable thumbnails below to see those:

Installation Name: Turquoise and Clear Eelgrass

"Turquoise and Clear Eelgrass"

And this was the installation that had been put in the base of the third waterfall at the back of the Lay Garden.

Installation Name: Ferns

The additional installation below was just across the small lawn from the waterfalls:


Installation Name: White Belugas

"White Belugas"

I am not sure where the name for the installation came from, unless it is a reference to the Beluga Whale, which would indeed be bulbous like the glass forms.


Paseo de Flores

Coming out of the Lay Ornamental Garden heading back west, we are at the eastern end of the Paseo de Flores- the main walkway through the center of the Arboretum

The Lyda Bunker Hunt Paseo de Flores, known simply as the Paseo, is the central walkway of the Dallas Arboretum. This meandering pathway, designed by Luis Santana, runs from the Trammell Crow Visitor Education Pavilion to the Alex Camp House and the entrance to the Lay Ornamental Garden.

Installation Name: Red Reeds

In front of the Alex Camp house is the the circular Fogelson Fountain. The fountain was donated by the late Greer Garson in memory of her husband, Buddy. This fountain and its pool were the setting for the largest of the Reeds installations.

Chihuly made the first Reeds in Finland; the factory's high ceilings made the tall, thin glass sculptures possible (well, that and a mechanical life to raise the glassblower high off the floor). As Chihuly said, "In Finland we started making these long, cylindrical pieces which loojked like spears. This was an exciting new form. It was the first time we ever made anything like that. They can be taken anywhere; they can go outside. They are very strong pieces, and they are very dramatic."

That is certainly true of this installation. The view at right is probably enough, but there are clickable thumbnails below for a couple of slightly different ones:

Installation Name: Ruby Fiddleheads

"Ruby Fiddleheads"

Going west along the Paseo, the next installation we came to was the Ruby Fiddleheads. The Fiddleheads were another example of Chihuly's Garden Glass series, which reflects the artist's affinity for plant-like forms. "There's something about the fluidity of glass that makes it want to make forms from nature", Chihuly said. "My forms are made in a very natural way, using fire, gravity, and centrifugal force, so they look like they come from nature. But I don't look at pictures of plants and say now I'm going to make one that looks like that."

Fred got what I thought was a nice picture of him and me with the Fiddleheads.

Installation Name: Dallas Star

"Dallas Star"

If there was ever a sculpture with a dramatic burst of energy, this may be it. The artist repeats one icicle shape hundreds of times to visually explode this sphere. The movemen t is in the color: the energy of the deep cobalt blue of the core is quickly released by the clear glass of the outer sphere.

The Dallas Star was certainly an energetic piece, and while energy is a characteristic found in all of Chihuly's artwork, this installation exemplified it perhaps better than any other. When asked about the way he works, Chihuly answered, "Quick and immediate and spontaneous, with an element of chance." And asked about where ideas come from he said: "The only explanation I'm ever able to give about where things come from is 'energy.' That has to come out in one way or another. Sometimes it's more destructive, sometimes it's more beautiful, sometimes more creative. Energy can go in so many directions, and you have to harness it. Correction! Youy don't harness it, you use it. You put it to good use."

Back on the Paseo, we headed towards the entrance and the last Chihuly installation.

Installation Name: Green and White Striped Reeds

"Green and White Striped Reeds"

This was the final installation of Chihuly's Reeds that we encountered in the Arboretum (and, as a matter of fact, the last Chihuly installation we visited). The tall, slender glass spears could only have been made in a glassblowing factor with high ceilings- like the Hackman factory in Finland, where Chihuly first made them. As Chihuly said, "This was an exciting new form. They can be taken anywhere; they can go outside. They are very strong pieces, and they are very dramatic."

But then we thought that all of Chihuly's pieces were dramatic.

We continued walking down the Paseo de Flores and then doubled back to revisit some of the installations that we'd only seen before sundown; that's when we took the night pictures of them. We left the Arboretum about nine-thirty, having seen just about everything. The glass was pretty spectacular all lit up at night.

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September 27, 2012: Prudence and Nancy at the Arboretum
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