4344 Shaw Blvd.
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ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), May 15, 2017 - The Missouri Botanical Garden is hosting floral glass artist Craig Mitchell Smith during its Garden of Glass event through August 13. Smith's pieces have previously been on exhibit at Walt Disney World's Epcot Center, Michigan State University and various botanic gardens.
Smith is known for his custom kiln fired technique and style. He uses fusing, texturing, slumping and cold working to create his pieces. This exhibit features 30 displays, all commissioned specifically for the Missouri Botanical Garden. It will be the world's largest kiln fired glass exhibit to date.
"We continue to look for exhibits which will delight our visitors," said Dr. Peter Wyse Jackson, president of the Missouri Botanical Garden. "Craig's passions for gardening and floral glass make this a perfect fit for the Garden."
The majority of the exhibit will be housed in the Garden's Climatron® with preview pieces on other parts of the grounds and one display at the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House.
Evening events will be held Thursday through Saturday evenings May 25 to August 12, from 7 p.m. - 11 p.m. and Sunday May, from 7 p.m. - 11 p.m. so that guests can see the exhibit with custom lighting. Evening events will feature food and beverage sales and live entertainment. The pieces are best seen at night, but will be on display during regular daytime hours at a reduced price.
Smith's pieces will be available for sale following the close of the show. Additional studio pieces will be available for sale in the shop located in Ridgway Visitors Center. A number of pieces for sale will be made with glass from the Garden's greenhouses. When the greenhouses were renovated, the glass was saved, and a portion is being used for this exhibit.
The Missouri Botanical Garden, fondly known as Shaw's Garden to St. Louisans, contains a formal English garden, traditional Japanese garden, Margaret Blanke Grigg Chinese garden, the Flower Trial Garden, greenhouses and extensive landscaping. The garden also features the Climatron Complex, water lily reflection ponds and the William T. Kemper Center for Home Gardening.
The Climatron® geodesic dome and rainforest conservatory was dedicated 40 years ago in October 1960, replacing an old house built in 1913. The structure incorporates principles established by innovative architect R. Buckminster Fuller and was the first application of geodesic engineering for a greenhouse. The St. Louis architecture firm of Murphy & Mackey developed plans for the facility with Garden director Frits W. Went, who coined the term, Climatron.
The dome is 70 feet high and 175 feet in diameter, permitting tall palm trees to tower majestically above the tropical vista of streams, waterfalls and 1,200 different species of exotic trees and plants. Temperature ranges from 64 to 74 degrees and average humidity is 85 percent.
Visitors can enjoy a sense of being in a jungle while making their way by orchids, passion flowers, hibiscus flowers, cycads and a number of endangered species. In 1976, the dome was named one of the 100 most significant architectural achievements in United States history.
The Garden, covering 79 acres, is located at 4344 Shaw Blvd, just south of Hwy 44 between Vandeventer and Grand. Extended summer hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesdays only from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Free parking on premises, as well as an extensive gift shop and restaurant with patio dining. For more information, call the GardenLine at 314-577-9400 or 800-642-8842.
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