When I arrived from Miami, I said “That’s it! I’m not traveling anymore until September.” There are a few engagements I’d love to attend in my old stomping grounds of New York City in the fall, and I rather save up all my energy until then. Lo and behold, I open my email, and see that James Turell is having a site-specific solo exhibition at the Guggenheim which will still be on view when I’m there (June 21–September 25). I would love to see this show in person. It’s exciting when a museum transforms their entire space. I worked at the Guggenheim as a lecturer during Brazil Body and Soul – an exhibition showcasing art work from Brazil starting with Baroque to contemporary works – and remember feeling like I walked into the 17th century (all the while counting my blessings that my version of a work day included such beauty). The museum housed a beautiful Rococo altar in the rotunda, which was dimly lit enhancing the structures grandiosity in size and revealing the untold stories with every intricate ornate detail.
The Turrell exhibition – and completely nothing like the Main Altar, São Bento, Olinda – will feature the installation Aten Reign (2013), which promises to be the most dramatic transformation the museum has ever conceived. The natural light that typically beams into the museum’s center space will tell a new story. The rotunda will be filled with modulating bright, intense color shifting from natural to artificial light, and designed to expose the materiality of light. Really? Light and tangibility? This is basically going to be a visual experience like no other. How can I not want to partake in such an experience?
I really hope all pans out and I can head over to New York in the fall. Definitely adding this to my “Must-See” list. But before I packing those bags, there’s a must-see Turrell retrospective at LACMA opening on 5.26.