Pace Gallery is honoured to present the first solo exhibition of James Turrell in our Geneva gallery.
On view from 25 February to 7 May 2022, this exhibition marks the 20th anniversary of Pace's representation of Turrell. Elemental is a brand-new immersive installation that expands across the gallery, building on the artist's lifelong exploration of perception, light, space, and time. Turrell's work evades classification, he explains, "with no object, no image and no focus, what are you looking at? You are looking at you looking." Placing experiences of time and space at the core of his practice, Turrell's installation emits a work of art that escapes physical boundary. Imperceptible pulsating transitions of colour mimic the animal mechanics of breathing. Yet, framed with curved corners akin to plane windows – or the convex appearance of the horizon line – the work is elevated to celestial proportion. The experience of seeing guides the viewer into a meditative state, paying homage to the artist's decades-long devotion to flying airplanes, his Quaker upbringing and immersion in West Coast and Eastern spiritualism.
Reinforcing relationships between technology and sensorial experience, Turrell brings attention to the materiality of light itself as it appears to oscillate between being 'within' the wall and floating beyond it. This site-specific gallery takeover continues the artist's ongoing investigations into light as both subject and material. In titling the work Elemental, the viewer is invited to return to the fundamentals of perception. Although immaterial, the lone presence of light as a substance rather than a tool of disclosure manifests it into physical quality. Light when manipulated by Turrell becomes a phenomenon perceived by and beyond the visual.
The Geneva exhibition coincides with a presentation at Pace's New York gallery at 540 West 25th Street, which features a new 2021 installation, After Effect.
Press release courtesy Pace Gallery.