Adelaide to host exclusive exhibition by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly

27 November 2023

The world’s most celebrated contemporary glass artist, Seattle-based Dale Chihuly, has chosen the stunning Adelaide Botanic Garden for the first major outdoor exhibition of his work in Australia and the wider southern hemisphere. Chihuly will present a curated selection of large-scale installations and sculptures in this Australian-exclusive exhibition from September 27, 2024, to April 29, 2025.

Known for pushing the limits of the glass material and elevating the medium from craft to fine art, Chihuly started placing installations in conservatories and gardens in 2001, beginning what has become known as his “Garden Cycle.” With this new exhibition, Adelaide will become only the third city outside the USA to host a “Garden Cycle” exhibition, following Kew Gardens in London and Singapore’s Gardens by the Bay.

Chihuly’s work was last seen in Adelaide in 2000 at JamFactory.

"I have sought an opportunity to return to Adelaide since 2000 when I first presented work at JamFactory,” said Chihuly. “Adelaide Botanic Garden offers so many rich colors and textures – the ideal environment for the placement of my work, and I look forward to sharing this new exhibition with the Adelaide and South Australian community.”

Adelaide to host exclusive exhibition by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly
Ethereal Spring Persians, 2022
6 x 9 x 8'
Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, installed 2023
© 2022 Chihuly Studio. All rights reserved.
Photographer: Nathaniel Willson

South Australian Tourism Minister Zoe Bettison said, “This is a coup for South Australia and the Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium, and the project will act as an important driver of national and international cultural tourism to our state and showcase our Botanic Gardens to new and returning visitors.”

“South Australian’s love to watch the seasons pass in the botanic gardens. The exhibition will show through spring, summer and autumn allowing visitors to experience the sculptures against the backdrop of blossom, sunshine and the changing autumn leaves.”

“From the play of purple wisteria and pink Lotus flowers to the yellow and red kangaroo paw and brown leaves and soft grey skies of early autumn I am excited for visitors to experience Chihuly’s incredible glass sculptures again and again.”

“The timing of this Australian first exclusive exhibition in our very own Adelaide Botanic Garden will cross over three school holiday periods as well as several other major events that our city is well known for, giving visitors a reason to stay in Adelaide a little longer and immerse themselves in art and nature.”

“Adelaide Botanic Garden is an exceptional tourism site. We are so lucky to have an internationally recognised botanic collection and heritage glass house right here in the East End of our city, walking distance from premium shopping and restaurants. This exhibition will invite visitors to explore not just our Garden but our whole city.

“The North Terrace Cultural Boulevard connects this exclusive arts event to the world-famous Jam Factory, a centre of excellence for glass art in its own right.”

Acting Premier of South Australia and Minister for Climate, Environment and Water, Dr Susan Close said:The opportunity to connect to nature is extremely important, especially in urban centres. For the South Australian Government, the Chihuly exhibition offers an irresistible drawcard to entice more South Australians and tourists into the wonderful environment of Adelaide Botanic Garden”.

“The South Australian community will reap truly widespread benefits from hosting a free and widely accessible experience such as Chihuly right here in the centre of Adelaide”.

“Not only will we be introducing the Botanic Garden to new audiences, but we’ll also be bringing people outdoors to enjoy a genuinely uplifting experience - that’s a health and well-being boost on top of the extremely positive injection into our tourism sector and local economy.”

Adelaide to host exclusive exhibition by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly
Sapphire Star, 2010
9½ x 9½ x 9½'
The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, installed 2017
© 2010 Chihuly Studio. All rights reserved.
Photographer: Scott Mitchell Leen

Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium Director Michael Harvey said he was elated that Adelaide has succeeded in securing a Chihuly exhibition,I am thrilled that Adelaide has succeeded in securing Chihuly’s Gardens Cycle exhibition.”

“It will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience an extensive collection of Chihuly’s monumental works in the beautiful setting of a botanic garden.”

“Over the seven months we are hosting Chihuly’s masterpieces we look forward to welcoming both garden lovers and art enthusiasts, and visitors of all ages who appreciate a visually stunning experience that will guarantee to surprise and delight.” Mr Harvey said.

Chihuly’s exquisite and dazzling artworks are often described as celebrations of what is found in nature. As a biodiversity hotspot in South Australia, with more than 1,000 plant species from Australia and around the world, Adelaide Botanic Garden is an ideal setting for Dale Chihuly’s work.”

Over the exhibition season, entry to Adelaide Botanic Garden will continue to be free to all visitors during the day.

The specially curated collection of Chihuly’s major works will form an art trail through Adelaide Botanic Garden, which is located on the edge of the Adelaide CBD.

As the project develops in partnership with the Chihuly Studio, we will also be working with local organisations to create additional ways for visitors to experience the work. Adelaide Botanic Garden has a history of working with and exhibiting the works of contemporary visual artists inspired by our magnificent gardens and buildings; however, the scale and ambition of this dramatic collection will elevate our art programming to an entirely new level,” Mr Harvey continued.

We are incredibly grateful for the support of the South Australian Government for recognising the cultural and economic potential of the project and in enabling us to bring this collection to Adelaide,” Mr Harvey said.

Further details of the exhibition, as well as special night events, additional exhibits, tours, and cultural, artistic and educational partnerships, will be announced in coming months.

Adelaide to host exclusive exhibition by world-renowned artist Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly
Float Boat (detail), 2014
3½ x 16 x 5½'
Gardens by the Bay, Singapore, installed 2021
© 2014 Chihuly Studio. All rights reserved.
Photographer: Nathaniel Willson

About Dale Chihuly

Dale Chihuly is an American artist who transforms spaces with experiments in color, light, transparency, and form. He is known for his exhibitions and large-scale architectural installations around the world and for revolutionizing the studio glass movement. Chihuly works with a variety of media including glass, paint, charcoal, neon, ice, and Polyvitro, and his work is included in more than 200 museum collections worldwide, including Metropolitan Museum of Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum and Corning Museum of Glass. Major exhibitions include Chihuly Over Venice (1995-96), Chihuly in the Light of Jerusalem (1999), de Young Museum in San Francisco (2008), Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2011), Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond (2012), Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal, Canada (2013), Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Canada (2016), Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas (2017), Groninger Museum, Groningen, Netherlands (2018), Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London, U.K (2019), and Gardens by the Bay, Singapore (2021). Chihuly Garden and Glass, a long-term exhibition located at the Seattle Center, opened in 2012.

About Adelaide Botanic Garden

Adelaide Botanic Garden is a world-renowned botanic garden located in the heart of Adelaide, South Australia.

Opened in 1857, it is one of the oldest and most respected botanic gardens in the world. The garden is home to an extensive collection of plants, including more than 1000 species from Australia and around the world. The Garden is divided into several distinct sections, each with its own unique character and charm. It is home to a stunning collection of plants, as well as a number of special features, including the magnificently restored 1877-built Palm House, the Bicentennial Conservatory, the First Creek Wetland, and the Amazon Waterlily Pavilion.

Adelaide Botanic Garden is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike, as a great place to spend a day exploring the beauty and diversity of plants from around the world, relaxing with loved ones and connecting with nature. The garden is also home to a number of popular events throughout the year, including concerts, festivals and art exhibitions.

Adelaide Botanic Garden is a must-see for anyone visiting Adelaide. It is a beautiful and tranquil place that offers something for everyone.

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