James Turrell

Topics: Eye, James Turrell, Mind Pages: 1 (320 words) Published: March 11, 2008
For nearly three decades James Turrell has used light, distance, and space in his work to create some of the most unique, visually stunning pieces of modern art. His goal is to create illusions and perceptions for the human eye. When asked about his work, James Turrell once said, "I am really interested in the qualities of one space sensing another. It is like looking at someone looking. Objectivity is gained by being once removed. As you plumb a space with vision, it is possible to 'see yourself see'. This seeing, this plumbing, imbues space with consciousness." James Turrell was born in Los Angeles in 1943. He attended school at Pomona College focusing on psychology and mathematics. Only after graduating did he pursue an interest in art. Turrell's work involves light and space that speak without words, impacting mind and the body. "I want to create an atmosphere that can be consciously plumbed with seeing," Turrell said, "like the wordless thought that comes from looking in a fire." Located near the Grand Canyon and Arizona's Painted Desert is Roden Crater, an extinct volcano which the artist has been in the process of transforming into a celestial observatory since 1972. Through the medium of light, the piece relates to the surrounding sky, land, and culture. The Crater will allow the people to see celestial phenomena with the naked eye. Since 1968, Turrell has made many other accomplishments and received many awards, a total of nineteen, including one from the French Government in 1991. Some of his pieces include The Summer Solstice, The Inner Way, Juke Green, Celestial Vault, Cat Cairn, and The Roden Crater. He is also famous for his Sky Space pieces. James Turrell is currently living in Arizona and continues to create unique, visual pieces of art using the mediums of light, shape, and distance. Turrell's work is being displayed in museums across the world.
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