If you ask someone, “Did you see the Turrell exhibition?,” then be prepared for a follow-up question: “Which one?” Through the end of summer, one can see the artist’s famous large-scale light installations in three different cities. Three separate and independently curated exhibitions are simultaneously on view at Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH), and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. Each exhibition explores varying facets of Turrell’s work, together providing a comprehensive overview of his career.
Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
James Turrell: A Retrospective
Through April 6, 2014
LACMA offers the first major retrospective survey of Turrell’s nearly five-decade career with approximately 50 works on display in 33,000 square feet of space. Works on view include geometric light projections from early in his career; installations exploring sensory deprivation; the Roden Crater project, an ongoing site-specific installation outside Flagstaff, Arizona; and more recent two-dimensional holograms. The retrospective will later travel to the Israel Museum in Jerusalem and the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH)
James Turrell: The Light Inside
Through September 22, 2013
The MFAH exhibition is titled after one of the museum’s permanent installations by Turrell, The Light Inside (1999). Several of the seven installations, which are entirely drawn from MFAH holdings, are being made accessible to the public for the first time. The majority of the exhibition is installed in the 22,000 square-foot galleries of the museum’s Brown Pavilion, designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The works “allow viewers to test the limits of their perception.” Also on view is Turrell’s Mapping Spaces portfolio and other works on paper related to the Roden Crater project.
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Through September 25, 2013
So much of Turrell’s work is site-specific, and the Guggenheim’s exhibition highlights this focus in his practice. The museum’s famous rotunda has been illuminated with natural and artificial light that constantly shifts, making for one of its more dramatic transformations to date. This new project, titled Aten Reign (2013), re-imagines the rotunda as one of Turrell’s Skyspaces, referencing the Roden Crater project. Other works by Turrell are on display in the museum’s Annex Level galleries.