Jump Start (1990)
Gifted by William Griffin
Langson IMCA acquired four cast-plaster models of Turrell’s Autonomous Structures including Jump Start. “Made between 1989 and 2010, the models evolved from spaces Turrell built and designed within the Roden Crater and, like the crater’s chambers, contain Skypaces (apertures to the sky carved into an enclosed space) or Ganzfeld pieces (unmodulated field of light that dissolve architectural space). Influenced by the design of ancient observatories, including Angkor Wat, Machu Picchu in Peru, and the Mayan and Egyptian pyramids, the structures are simultaneously ancient and futuristic. As Turrell explains, ‘Autonomous Structures are just containers for the light; the art is in the experience of the viewer’ (artobserved.com).”
James Turrell (b. 1943)
Known for his perception-altering light and space installations, James Turrell is among the most influential artists of the past 50 years. Turrell attended Pomona College, where he studied psychology and mathematics, briefly enrolled in the graduate studio art program at UCI in 1966, and received a Master’s degree in Art from Claremont Graduate School in 1973.
“Informed by his training in perceptual psychology and a childhood fascination with light, [James] Turrell began experimenting with light as a medium in Southern California in the mid-1960s. . . These investigations aligning and mixing interior and exterior, formed the groundwork for the open sky spaces found in his later Skyspace, Tunnel and Crater artworks (jamesturrell.com).” Since 1977 Turrell has been transforming Roden Crater, an extinct volcano in Arizona, into a monumental observatory designed specifically for viewing and experiencing the earth’s atmosphere and celestial phenomena through a series of underground spaces, shafts, and tunnels.
Turrell has works permanently installed in several institutions, including DeYoung Museum (San Francisco), MoMA PS1 (New York), Pomona College Museum of Art (CA), and Walker Art Center (Minneapolis). Collections containing his work include Hirshhorn Museum (Washington, DC); Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Orange County Museum of Art (Santa Ana); San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (New York); The Museum of Modern Art (New York); and Whitney Museum of American Art (New York).