University of Nebraska Medical Center

Sapphire Icicle Tower

Sapphire Icicle Tower , Chihuly Sanctuary.

Dale Chihuly


Blown glass

Gift of Suzanne and Walter Scott

Located on Level Four in the Chihuly Sanctuary, Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center.

The initial phase of extensive experimentation with the Chandeliers culminated in the Chihuly Over Venice project (1995–96), during which Chihuly varied both the shapes of the glass forms and the armatures themselves. Subsequent projects continued to challenge the artist to create large sculptures for spaces without ceilings or where the ceilings could not bear the weight of Chandeliers, giving life to the development of the Tower series.

The Sapphire Icicle Tower, which stands at 11 feet, exemplifies Chihuly’s desire to mass color on a steel armature for dramatic effect. Its approximately 325 pieces create what he calls “a core of color.”

“I tend to do things on a large scale because it’s exciting. I like to push things in new and different ways.”

—Dale Chihuly