“The Seaforms call forth associations with water, marine life and movement without depicting them, and that’s why they so persuasively affect us as art,” writes art critic Joan Seeman Robinson. Dale Chihuly grew up surrounded by the waters of Puget Sound, so it is not surprising that his work has been influenced by the sea. The artist himself has noted that “as soon as I saw the Baskets begin to look like shells and things from the sea, I pushed the idea of the transparency of the glass and the sea and the water . . . and it all fit together in the forms.”
Animated and complex, the Saffron Seaform Pair is a fluent example of Chihuly’s Seaform series. A thin crimson body wrap is skillfully applied to each piece of this two-part composition, providing a vivid juxtaposition to the rich honeyed yellow. This contrast extends the dimensional ebb and flow of the sculpture’s undulating ripples and radial design.
The 2013 Chihuly Workshop Studio Edition, signed by the artist, measures approximately nine inches across and is accompanied by a Plexiglas vitrine with black base for display. The ensemble is complemented by a 110-page clothbound book, Chihuly Seaforms, which includes forty-four full-color reproductions of this series and insightful essays by art critic Joan Seeman Robinson and author and oceanographer Sylvia Earle.
The Saffron Seaform Pair embodies the rich relationship between nature and art in Chihuly’s work.