Update: 18 April, 2018
QAGOMA has had to postpone the 20 April launch of James Turrell’s architectural light commission due to the unforeseen illness of the artist. As this unique artwork is programmed and created on-site, the launch will be rescheduled when James is able to travel to Brisbane, with a new date to be advised.
Internationally renowned light artist James Turrell is set to transform Queensland’s Gallery of Modern Art with a major architectural light installation to mark GOMA’s 10th anniversary year.
QAGOMA Director Chris Saines says the special commission is set to be permanent, illuminating GOMA’s facade at night from early December 2017. Ambitious and dramatic, it will transform the way the Gallery of Modern Art building is seen and experienced by local and international audiences.
Says Saines, ‘In 2002, after Architectus + Davenport Campbell won the international competition to design the Gallery of Modern Art, lead architects Kerry Clare, Lindsay Clare and James Jones envisaged an artist-illuminated ‘white box’ on the building’s main pedestrian approaches.’
Turrell’s installation will activate the potential of GOMA’s white box facade and realise one of the architects’ original design intentions with the building.
Its eastern and southern facades will be illuminated from within from dusk, with an evolving pattern of light developed by the artist for the location. Visible from around the Cultural Precinct and across the river, it will add a substantial presence to the already iconic building, giving Brisbane’s cityscape new life after dark.
For more than half a century, Arizona-based Turrell has worked with light and space to create immersive and moving artworks that play with viewers’ perceptions. His large-scale luminous installations – located in or on buildings, or within landscapes – attract visitors from around the world. He has created more than 80 ‘Skyspaces’, chambers with an aperture in the ceiling open to the sky, including Within without (2010) at the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, and Amarna (2015), at the Museum of Old and New Art in Hobart.
Since 1974, he has been working on a monumental project at Roden Crater, an extinct volcano in northern Arizona, while continuing to create works for public and private institutions in over 24 countries.
Seen at top: James Turrell at GOMA (artist impression).