I received an e-mail from the Mint Museum announcing that they were allowing people to watch the two-day installation of their Dale Chihuly sculpture. They originally hung this work in the Mint Museum of Craft and Design. The sculpture went by the name, Royal Blue Mint Chandelier and Chihuly made it in 1998. Today, they moved it to a new Mint Museum next to the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. The building itself will officially open in October 2010. Regarding the style, the tan architecture of the Mint Museum made this nice contrast to the orange exterior of the Bechtler. There was not much of a crowd, just people coming to look and then walk away. I did talk to one smart lady who brought a collapsible camping chair so she can sit and watch. She said that they let hold a piece of the sculpture and remarked that it felt heavy.
It was fascinating watching workers plan out the strategy of putting up the sculpture. Years ago, I had seen this work hung up together in all its glory. Today, they laid it out on a protective covering on the floor while workers check the ceiling to make sure that the artwork could hang off it. I counted about forty pieces found. I also saw the prop that held the coiled glass together. Alone, it looks like a Christmas tree stand. Viewers never see this because the coiled glass covers it up completely. By the way, when this worker (seen in this photo here) put up the first piece, everyone applauded. For those living in Charlotte, they will continue installing this tomorrow.
Regarding Dale Chihuly, he reminds me of Jean Tinguely in that his work has this universal appeal. You install their works almost anywhere, and it would hardly look out-of-place. However, some of Chihuly’s works looks like he captured an explosion.