Our visit to Phoenix coincided with a show of Chihuly blown glass scuptures at the botanical garden. We had seen an excellent PBS show about the production of the work, but this was our first exposure to the real objects.
Quite a few visitors posed family members for pictures in front of the sculptures. I'm not sure why.
The skill and craftsmanship that goes into it is undeniably impressive, but I could not find much enthusiasm in myself in looking at the sculptures. I think I might have preferred to see them in a gallery. In the naturalistic setting of the garden, they seemed out of place. The contrasts with the bizarre natural forms of the cactus and succulents were not favorable to the plastic textured sculptures.
The Albuquerque botanical garden has a yearly show of led-lit sculptures which is also uninteresting to me. The traditional garden sculptures seem fine, but the modern stuff is just intrusive. I guess I just don't like the combination.
There was a gift shop of Chihuly items including books, coffee mugs, etc., all impressed with the Chihuly brand. It pretty much summed up everything I find objectionable about what is today called fine art.