The natural world, and plant life in particular, has always been a source of inspiration to artists through the ages. Some, like Van Gogh and his sunflowers or Monet, painting his impressionist view of his gardens at Giverny, gave us their unique vision of how they see and respond to it. Today's artists, like Andy Goldsworthy, are also inspired by nature. In his unique expression, he actually uses it as his canvas and his palette.
Artwork inspired by nature and then placed into a garden setting can also have a dramatic effect. Consider the art of Dale Chihuly, world renowned glass artist. In installations around the world, one can see Chilhuly's art as an extension of the garden itself. Seedpods, leaves, branches and flowers, all interwoven into the landscape, provide a viewer with an experience of walking into another world. An alien, yet familiar one, where yellow glass lily pads mix with aquatic life, blue orbs peak out from under shrubs like some form of other worldly mushroom and giant thistle-like glass flowers sparkle in the reflection of a garden pond.
To encounter a Chihuly installation is an experience like no other. For more information on Chihuly, with images and locations where his art can be seen go to http://www.chihuly.com