By: Kat Harlton

Photos: Tiffany Shum

http://www.rom.on.ca/en/chihuly

This past Saturday afternoon I had the opportunity to explore Dale Chihuly’s first ever exhibition in Toronto at The Royal Ontario Museum.

For those unfamiliar with his work, Chihuly is an internationally renowned glass sculptor, who has had his work displayed in more than 200 museum collections worldwide, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Corning Museum of Glass.

From the moment I stepped inside the exhibition I was struck by the scale of his work, and the vision it must take to be able to create artwork this large, with as much detail as these pieces have.

One piece in particular, Laguna Torcello (2012) which is part of his long-standing series called Mille Fiori, left me in awe. It requires you to walk around it more than once, and I found that each time I did I discovered something I had missed previously like the white belugas or squids hidden in the reeds. It’s absolutely stunning.

My favorite piece; however, was Persian Ceiling. Museum guests can lounge on bean bag chairs while staring at the layered, light-filled glass ceiling above. Again, the more you explore the piece the more hidden gems you find including starfish and shells. It’s calming and gave me the feeling of being ‘under the sea’.

The exhibition closes with his early experiments in the Baskets series, as well as his personal collection of American Indian trade blankets.

Seriously, his artwork was some of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen in my life, and I’m tempted to go again. For those interested in visiting CHIHULY, for the first (or second) time the exhibition is on display until January 2, 2017