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Saturday 26 July 2014

'King of glass' shines at opening of dual exhibition

Kirsty Blake Knox

Published 20/06/2014|02:30

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Sophie Longwell with one of the Ulysses Cylinders by Dale Chihuly
Dale Chihuly and his wife Leslie

THE king of glass, Dale Chihuly, has finally brought his works inspired by author James Joyce to Dublin after a car crash scuppered a previous attempt.

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The American artist opened two major exhibitions in Dublin this week – the world premiere of 'Ulysses Cylinders' inspired by Joyce's iconic novel at Dublin Castle's Coach House, while 15 key pieces from his career were also put on display in the Solomon Gallery.

'Ulysses Cylinders' was intended to premiere in Ireland back in the 1970s but was cancelled after Chihuly was involved in a horrific car crash en route to Ireland, permanently losing the sight in his left eye.

Attracted

The Irish public will have a unique opportunity to see the work of one of the world’s most renowned artists when ‘Ulysses Cylinders’ opens in Dublin Castle this summer. Photo: Damien Eagers
A collection of golden glass, 'Ulysses Cylinders' by Dale Chihuly and Seaver Leslie with Flora C. Mace and Joey Kirkpatrick takes place at the Coach House, Dublin Castle from the June 19th to August 23rd. Photo: Damien Eagers
Dale Chihuly at the opening night of his solo exhibition of glass at the Solomon Gallery in Dublin. Photo: Arthur Carron

Speaking at the exhibition launch last night, Chihuly (72) said it was "the people, the landscape, the colours and the language" that attracted him to Ireland.

"I spent a good deal of time on the west coast when I was younger," he said. "I connect with the soil. I wanted to reference and honour the rich archaeological tradition of Ireland and wrapped the cylinders in gold."

"It's a homecoming of sorts," exhibition director Paula Stokes explained.

"He's blown glass in Waterford and got engaged here so there's a lot of history. Opening the 'Ulysses Cylinders' during Bloomsday week has been such an amazing experience for him – for us all."

Irish Independent

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