Bonfire Baskets, 2003
Donated by: Chihuly Studio
Writing of aged Indian baskets, Henry Geldzahler, then a curator at the Metropolitan
Museum of Art, explained, “When Chihuly saw these misshapen fiber baskets, he saw
the essence of glass.” Since their first appearance in a 1977 exhibition at the Seattle Art
Museum, Dale Chihuly’s Baskets have evolved into an organic series that embraces the
natural qualities of molten glass. “This meant letting glass find its own form,” says
Bonfire Baskets, a 2003 Chihuly Workshop Studio Edition, explores the inherent
delicacy of glass. A fine black glass thread trails over the surfaces of two transparent
red elements, one piece nesting within the other. The transparency allows simultaneous
visual access to the three-dimensional forms and their linear surface features. This
elegant handblown work is signed and measures approximately ten inches across.
Included with this pair is a Plexiglas display case and the hardcover monograph Chihuly
Baskets. This 148-page publication features two essays and seventeen beautiful
sepia tones images of Native American basketry that inspired Chihuly.
With graceful harmony and languid curves, Bonfire Baskets exemplifies refinement.