James Turrell

Williams College Museum of Art (WCMA)

Less a theorist than a phenomenologist, James Turrell invites us not to think light and space abstractly, but to live and explore them freshly as they are continuously and contingently re-solved by us in experience. His environmental situations and temporal contexts make possible a return to a radical form of consciousness—one in which we can “feel the presence of light inhabiting a space” and renew our “primal connection” with an embodied vision “not limited to just that received by the eyes,” but understood also as a mode of “entry of the self into that which is ‘seen.’” Facilitating such entry into the seen, however, is no easy matter. As Turrell points out, “for something so powerful” as light, the “situations for its felt presence are fragile.”

Objectively described (an oxymoronic exercise, particularly in relation to Turrell’s work), Between that Seen, 1991, is a variation on Turrell’s

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