Chihuly's Fern Green Tower

The Green Snakes. Medusa. The Big Tower. Regardless of what our guests admiringly call it, Dale Chihuly’s Fern Green Tower has become one of the Museum’s most recognizable pieces. It is often our visitors’ first glimpse into the Museum’s massive glass collection and you can even see it glowing green and bright as you drive past the Museum at night.

Beginning Thursday, February 28, the Tower was disassembled, slowly and methodically, piece by citron piece. This was clearly a job for Team Chihuly and the seasoned professionals of the curatorial department as those of us behind the Admissions Lobby desk gasped at the sound of even the tiniest ‘clink.’ Each element of the Tower was carefully taken behind the scenes for a thorough cleaning in preparation for phase two of the reconfiguration.

The cleaned glass awaits the reconfiguration

The cleaned glass awaits the reconfiguration.

On Monday, March 4, Britt Cornett, head of exhibitions for Chihuly and Tom Lind, Team Chihuly’s project manager, arrived armed with brand new citron elements to add to the 500 hand-blown glass pieces of the original sculpture. The new elements were created in Seattle and shipped to Corning, carefully packed in labeled boxes.

Moving boxes with glass elements into the Museum


We learned that the individual pieces have unique names describing their shape. Among them are horns, goose necks and horn balls.

Hand- blown glass elements are placed onto the new, taller armature of the sculpture.

Hand- blown glass horns, goose necks and horn balls are placed onto the new, taller armature of the sculpture.

Since the start of the North Wing Addition project in 2012, there have been numerous improvements already taking place within the Museum, including a new Hot Glass Show stage and new exhibitions and, now of course, the growth of Chihuly’s Tower. We’re excited about all that’s happening and welcome and encourage guests to be witness to the exciting growth and changes that are happening every day.

Be sure to visit the Museum to check out the newly reconfigured, taller Fern Green Tower!