In 2013 local artist Keith Walker was commissioned to create a blown glass installation that would highlight the centre court in one of the most distinctive sights in Edmonton, the Muttart Conservatory. Months of planning and hard work paid off in March of 2014, as the artwork was installed in the apex of Muttart’s fifth pyramid. The installation is an exciting addition to the collection of permanent art pieces at the attraction, creating a diverse display for visitors that needs to be seen to fully appreciate and enjoy.
Keith Walker says, “My intent with this installation is to instill a feeling of fantasy and wonder from the viewer's perspective. Bold use of colours and the whimsical nature of the forms could suggest something of this world on a microscopic level or simply something out of this world which could only be realized in one’s dreams”.
This permanent installation celebrates the diversity, variety and abundance of life on Earth! The central core of single-cell organisms is encircled by complex plant and animal species that interconnect to form a working ecosystem. Each performs a specific function; removing any organism puts the system out of balance. Through hand-blown glass, each organism in this symbolic representation shows its own unique characteristics of colour, shape, structure, luminosity, and texture, while sharing the common trait of fragility. As it catches the light, I hope it catches our imagination and reminds us of the wonder and beauty of life all around us.
Keith Walker and Tommy T, 2014