James Turrell, The Natural, and The Artificial

I have been in the presence of the Grand Canyon four times so far, have been down the lip of the Grand Canyon a couple of miles, have seen it in a variety of seasons — spring, summer, and fall — in a variety of weather conditions — snowfall on the rim and desert heat down below — among a throng and in a stupefied solitude, and so far I have not depleted the Grand Canyon. Indeed, I have not yet made a start on it.

What Is James Turrell Doing in a Las Vegas Louis Vuitton Store?

SAN FRANCISCO — On a hot desert afternoon nothing sounds better than the arctic blast of a shopping center. Yes, it is a “dry heat,” but at 110 degrees, the relevance of humidity levels dissipates. So what store should you go to? If it were me, I’d call Louis Vuitton at City Center and make an appointment to see the new James Turrell! Number one: yes, you read that right — there is a permanent installation by Turrell at Louis Vuitton City Center. Number two: yes, you read that right — you will have to make an appointment to see the work.

Visions of Light at the Guggenheim

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Guggenheim Museum in New York is one of the most famous contemporary art institutions in the world, and yet part of that fame, lending the place a kind of quasi-notoriety, is the idea that the building itself isn’t actually a great venue for showing art. Or as architecture Paul Goldberger wrote a few years ago in The New Yorker, “the charge that the building upstages the art has become part of its legend.” In my experiences at the Guggenheim, I’ve found that the legend often holds true — the perpetually sloping spirals of the space make for excellent wandering but distracted art viewing. In a new work by Light and Space artist James Turrell, however, the building may have finally found its match.

How to Destroy a James Turrell

NORTH ADAMS, Massachusetts — Everything is bigger in Texas: the roads, the suburbs, the T-bone steaks, the ten-gallon hats, and certainly the sky. The Texas sky seems to go on and on, an uncanny hue of blue, pierced only by the white-hot nexus of the unrelenting sun. Indeed, waxing poetic with reflections of the human gaze upon the heavens is, in some ways, what James Turrell’s work is all about. His Skyspace series in particular gives the viewer a chance at intimacy with a clear view of the celestial canvas.

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