World Class Glass at FWMOA (VIDEO)

By Eric Olson

July 23, 2013 Updated Jul 23, 2013 at 12:16 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) -- His name is Dale Chihuly and he, along with his teacher Harvey Littleton are credited with turning glass making into an art form. Chihuly’s glass creations are stunning, graceful…magnificent. An entirely new art form barely fifty years old.

Right now the Fort Wayne Museum of Art is exhibiting some of Dale Chihuly’s finest works…immense, colorful creations mimicking forms found in nature in fields and in forests, along rivers and streams….a garden of inspiration for the eye. But there’s more here than Chihuly. In a nearby gallery are works by his students…men and women who worked by his side, learned his techniques…then set out to make their own statement, and many of these students have surpassed their teacher. This breathtaking work by American artist Toots Zynsky is built of individual threads of glass, stacked one on top of the other then fused together in a kiln. This piece by Hungarian artist Zolton Bohus is called ‘Landscape’. And dozens of other works just as beautiful fill this room…none of their creators copying the style of their famous teacher.

“Dale didn’t care that you mimic him or imitate him in any way,” explains museum director Charles Shepard III. “What he cared about was that you found your own voice in this new medium, glass, which to him was the equivalent of bronze or anything else sculpturally made in marble whatever it was, just happened to be molten glass.”

And still more in this remarkable exhibition, the winners of the 41st Annual International Glass Invitational, 26 of the finest glass sculptors in the world whose works are here in Fort Wayne Indiana, your backyard, for you to see, to enjoy, to be inspired by. A remarkable gift, a once in a lifetime experience, waiting for you…in a treasured corner of 21 Country. This is Eric Olson reporting.

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