Art Reflects Imagination

Wednesday, August 17, 2011 11:09 AM by Kortney Scroger

experience the art of glassblowing from beginning to end at the museum of glass
Behind the main streets of Pacific Avenue, the heart of downtown Tacoma, you will see something unlike anything you have ever witnessed. Immerging from the streets is a towering, glimmering 90-foot cone that will have you eager to see what's inside.

Way before reaching the cone, I was enchanted by the connecting bridge and water exhibits that display the magic of glass art long before you enter the Museum of Glass. The Chihuly Bridge of Glass displays hundreds of glass creations and the "Fluent Steps" along the water are a beautiful sight, day and night. The Museum was originally designed to highlight the famous Pacific Northwest artist Dave Chihuly, and though his pieces can still be found on display, the museum has expanded way beyond its original intent. Once inside the Museum of Glass, there is so much to view you won't even know where to begin!

Perhaps the most exciting aspect of this museum is what is known as the Jane Russell Hot Shop, located in the heart of the cone. In this room you can actually watch glass art being created, giving you an up-close-and-personal view of an artist at play. Each week during the summer there is a visiting artist and at any time during museum hours you can see their creativity in action.

One exhibit that I found particularly enticing is the Kids Design Glass exhibit, an exhibit that is fairly new to the museum. The concept is that children draw pictures using their imagination to create whatever their young minds can think up. Then, the hot shop crew literally uses their drawings as blueprints and creates these creatures out of glass, bringing the one-dimensional drawing to life. Needless to say, this exhibit is bound to make you smile a mile wide. I saw everything from pizza cats with pizza crust for ears to a lemon-drop mouse in which the mouse's entire body was shaped like lemon-drop candy, all made of glass! Each piece of art is accompanied by the original drawing and an explanation of the creation. Reading about these kid-inspired "masterpieces" could have kept me entertained long after the museum closed its doors for the night.

Along with this quirky kid exhibit the museum has additional visiting exhibits that are constantly changing, the exhibit that is currently on display is entitled "Glimmering Gone" and you'll just have to visit to experience that for yourself!

If live glassblowing and art exhibits aren't enough the Museum of Glass also features art studio that has classes for all ages and a café that serves everything from coffee to sandwiches. There is also a gift shop full of glass art pieces to add to your own collection.

Kortney's Recap: The Museum of Glass is a must-visit for people of all ages to experience and appreciate the art of glass blowing in the Pacific Northwest!
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Author: Kortney Scroger

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