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Chihuly over Washington

Artist's glass chandeliers grace the Corcoran

May 18, 1997
Web posted at: 4:11 p.m. EDT (2011 GMT)

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A wonderland of glass hangs from the ceiling of the atrium at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. -- 11 of the 14 chandeliers in artist Dale Chihuly's "Chihuly Over Venice."

The 55-year-old Washington state native envisioned the chandeliers hanging over the canals of Venice. Chihuly and his team traveled to Italy, Ireland, Finland and Mexico -- all with great glass-blowing traditions -- to work with international artists on the project.

Chihuly began working with glass in 1961 while at the University of Washington in Seattle, where he studied interior design and architecture. He first tried his hand at blown glass in 1965 and entered the University of Wisconsin, Madison, the following year to study the art.

Chihuly -- the first American to study at the Vinini Fabrica glass works outside Venice -- and his international team of artists worked in 1995 and 1996 on "Chihuly Over Venice," and the chandeliers hung in the Italian city in September 1996.

The chandeliers will hang in the Corcoran until September 1.


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