California Light + Space MovementArt 109A: Art since 1945Westchester Community CollegeFall 2012Dr. Melissa Hall
West CoastMinimalismOn the West Coast, a number ofartists explored ideas thatparalleled New York Minimalism               ...
“By the mid-1960s California artists hadWest Coastembraced Minimalism and given it aMinimalismuniquely West Coast spin in ...
West CoastMinimalismJohn McCracken createdMinimalist works thatincorporated popreferences in their titles andslick lacquer...
West CoastMinimalismDesigned to lean directly againstthe wall, his “planks” exist in anuncertain place between paintingand...
West Coast  Minimalism“McCracken began producing his vibrantlacquered monochrome "planks" in 1966.While the polished resin...
West CoastMinimalismLarry Bell began working with theminimalist form of the cube, usingglass to explore the complexities o...
“With their enclosed rectilinear shapes, the                                                         cubes bear a resembla...
Larry Bell, Untitled, 1969http://www.quotestemple.com/Quotes/larry-bell-quote-hes-not-going-to-win-but-my-vote-is-a-vote-f...
California Lightand SpaceMovementThe California light and spacemovement included artists such asLarry Bell, Robert Irwin, ...
California Lightand SpaceMovementThey used light and scrims tocreate extraordinary perceptualexperiences that border on mi...
Doug Wheeler, 68 VEN MCASD 11, 1968/2011. Exhibition view Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface.
“This untitled work is a                                                                                              conv...
“The idea, in part,                                                                                              extends t...
“To be an artist is not a                               matter of making                               paintings or object...
“My art has never been                               about ideas . . . . My                               interest in art ...
“What I would like to do is                               to make you aware that                               you see and...
“If light is the medium                               and space is the medium,                               then, in a se...
James TurrellJames Turrell’s work isbased on his studies ofpsychology and perception                            James Turr...
“Turrell’s work involves explorations                                    in light and space that speak to                 ...
“James Turrell has been building rooms to  which he has given the name Skyspace  since 1974. A chamber of certain  dimensi...
“The reason I started the Skyspace series                                    was to get a situation where the sky was     ...
“Whether harnessing the light at sunset or                                  transforming the glow of a television set into...
Manipulating light as a sculptor                                                                                  would mo...
“Throughout history, the artist has been a                                       shaper of matter, whether the pigment of ...
“To view A Frontal Passage, the visitor passes                                       through a darkened entryway into a ch...
”My work is more about your seeing than it                                       is about my seeing”                      ...
California Lightand SpaceMovementTurrell’s most recent project isRoden Crater -- an extinct volcanothat the artist is tran...
James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
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6.2 minimalism california

  1. 1. California Light + Space MovementArt 109A: Art since 1945Westchester Community CollegeFall 2012Dr. Melissa Hall
  2. 2. West CoastMinimalismOn the West Coast, a number ofartists explored ideas thatparalleled New York Minimalism The Ferus Gallery, Los Angeles, 1962 Artnet
  3. 3. “By the mid-1960s California artists hadWest Coastembraced Minimalism and given it aMinimalismuniquely West Coast spin in the LosAngeles Fetish Finish and Light andSpace movements. Artists such asPeter Alexander, Larry Bell, CraigKauffman, and DeWain Valentine wereincorporating into their work the latesttechnologies of the Southern Californiabased engineering and aerospaceindustries to develop sensuous, light-filled objects”http://www.ocma.net/index.html?page=past&show=exhibit&e_id=401 The Ferus Gallery, Los Angeles, 1962 Artnet
  4. 4. West CoastMinimalismJohn McCracken createdMinimalist works thatincorporated popreferences in their titles andslick lacquer finish John McCracken Image source: http://venice-in-venice.com/mccracken-john.html
  5. 5. West CoastMinimalismDesigned to lean directly againstthe wall, his “planks” exist in anuncertain place between paintingand sculpture John McCracken, Think Pink, 1967 Image source: http://artobserved.com/2011/02/go-see-turin-john-mccracken-at-castello-di-rivoli-through- june-19th-2011/
  6. 6. West Coast Minimalism“McCracken began producing his vibrantlacquered monochrome "planks" in 1966.While the polished resin surface recallsthe aesthetic of 1960s southernCalifornia surfboard and Kustom Karcultures, the title was drawn fromadvertising slogans in fashionmagazines. The planks interaction withboth the floor and wall is meant to callattention to the space occupied by bothviewer and object. ‘I see the plank asexisting between two worlds’ McCrackensays, ‘the floor representing the physicalworld of standing objects, trees, cars,buildings, human bodies, and everything,and the wall representing the world ofthe imagination, illusionistic paintingspace, human mental space, and allthat.’”Museum of Modern Art John McCracken, Think Pink, 1967 Image source: http://artobserved.com/2011/02/go-see-turin-john-mccracken-at-castello-di-rivoli-through- june-19th-2011/
  7. 7. West CoastMinimalismLarry Bell began working with theminimalist form of the cube, usingglass to explore the complexities ofperception Larry Bell with cube at Jacobson Howard Gallery, New York City, 2005. Photo by Jennifer Lynch http://artandliving.net/2008/05/13/art-spotlight-interview-with-ed- moses-and-larry-bell/
  8. 8. “With their enclosed rectilinear shapes, the cubes bear a resemblance to Minimalist sculptures that were being made contemporaneously in New York. But like other Light-and-Space artists active in Los Angeles in the 1960s, Bell was interested less in literal, material objects than in the nature of our perception. At the same time that they carve out and define a given volume of space, works like 20" Untitled 1969 (Tom Messer Cube) become a continuum of their surrounding space, partly reflecting whatever happens to be in the environment while also permitting the viewer to see through them from every angle. By setting some of his cubes on clear Plexiglas pedestals, Bell further collapses their physical presence and produces a sense of weightlessness. The gray-tinged cube of this work seems more substantial than its invisible base and appears to hover in the air.” Guggenheim MuseumLarry Bell, 20" Untitled 1969 (Tom Messner Cube), 1969Guggenheim
  9. 9. Larry Bell, Untitled, 1969http://www.quotestemple.com/Quotes/larry-bell-quote-hes-not-going-to-win-but-my-vote-is-a-vote-for-having-more
  10. 10. California Lightand SpaceMovementThe California light and spacemovement included artists such asLarry Bell, Robert Irwin, and JamesTurrell Robert Irwin in the Robert CaplanArtist-in-Residence Studio MCASD Jacobs Building, on July 11, 2007. Photograph by Stephanie Diani http://www.e-flux.com/announcements/robert-irwin-2/
  11. 11. California Lightand SpaceMovementThey used light and scrims tocreate extraordinary perceptualexperiences that border on mind-altering encounters Doug Wheeler, Light Encasement, 1968
  12. 12. Doug Wheeler, 68 VEN MCASD 11, 1968/2011. Exhibition view Phenomenal: California Light, Space, Surface.
  13. 13. “This untitled work is a convex, spray-painted disk held a foot or so out from the wall by a central post. Its subtle, tactile surface modulates delicately from center to edge, and it is softly lit from four angles, creating a cloverleaf pattern of shadow. The white center of the disk can seem to lie level with the white wall, so that the eye spends time trying to understand what it sees—what is nearer and what is farther, what is solid and what is immaterial light, or even lights absence. For Irwin, the result is ‘this indeterminate physicality with different levels of weight and density, each on a different physical plane. It [is] very beautiful and quite confusing, everything starting and reversing.’”Robert Irwin, Untitled, 1968 Museum of Modern ArtSynthetic polymer paint on aluminum and electric light, Disc 60 3/8" (153.2 cm) in diameterMuseum of Modern Art
  14. 14. “The idea, in part, extends the Abstract Expressionist notion of an infinite, all– encompassing, allover field, but with the qualification that for Irwin, ‘To be an artist is not a matter of making paintings or objects at all. What we are really dealing with is our state of consciousness and the shape of our perceptions.’” Museum of Modern ArtRobert Irwin, Untitled, 1968Synthetic polymer paint on aluminum and electric light, Disc 60 3/8" (153.2 cm) in diameterMuseum of Modern Art
  15. 15. “To be an artist is not a matter of making paintings or objects at all. What we are really dealing with is our state of consciousness and the shape of our perception.” Robert IrwinRobert Irwin, Untitled, 1968SFMOMA
  16. 16. “My art has never been about ideas . . . . My interest in art has never been about abstraction; it has always been about experience . . . . My pieces were never meant to be dealt with intellectually as ideas, but to be considered experientially.” Robert IrwinRobert Irwin, Untitled, 1968SFMOMA
  17. 17. “What I would like to do is to make you aware that you see and that, by not being able to prejudice the situation, you suddenly become party to an entirely different structure of the state of the real. It’s you that does it, not me. So it can’t really manifest itself as an idea, or an object, or an event because any of these things becomes distracting and at least in part about itself.” Robert IrwinRobert Irwin, Untitled, 1968SFMOMA
  18. 18. “If light is the medium and space is the medium, then, in a sense, the universe is the medium. I know the impracticality of it right now but when I say that the medium is the universe, that maybe the world is an art form, then the gardening of our universe or our consciousness would be the level of our art participation . . . . That’s the reason for my participation in some other activities.” Robert IrwinRobert Irwin, Untitled, 1968SFMOMA
  19. 19. James TurrellJames Turrell’s work isbased on his studies ofpsychology and perception James Turrell at Roden Crater http://www.rodencrater.com/james.html
  20. 20. “Turrell’s work involves explorations in light and space that speak to viewers without words, impacting the eye, body, and mind with the force of a spiritual awakening. ‘I want to create an atmosphere that can be consciously plumbed with seeing,’ says the artist, “like the wordless thought that comes from looking in a fire.’” James Turrell Art:21 (PBS)James Turrell, Alta (White), 1967
  21. 21. “James Turrell has been building rooms to which he has given the name Skyspace since 1974. A chamber of certain dimensions is constructed; containing only seating, lighting and an aperture in the ceiling, in which visitors can sit and gaze at the sky.” James Turrell Deer Shelter (Art Fund Comsion)James Turrell, Live Oak Friends MeetingHouse, 2001Houston, Texas
  22. 22. “The reason I started the Skyspace series was to get a situation where the sky was actually brought down in close contact -- there’s long been an art where light is the subject, I want it also to be the material. How these things are brought close to you so they become part of your territory is something very important to me.” James TurrellJames Turrell, Deer Shelter, 2006Yorkshire Sculpture Park, U.K.
  23. 23. “Whether harnessing the light at sunset or transforming the glow of a television set into a fluctuating portal, Turrell’s art places viewers in a realm of pure experience” James Turrell Art:21 (PBS)James Turrell, Tall Glass, 2007Pace Wildenstein
  24. 24. Manipulating light as a sculptor would mold clay, James Turrell creates works that amplify perception. Unlike pictorial art that replicates visual experience through mimetic illusion, Turrell’s light works—one cannot call these shimmering events ”objects“ or ”images“—give form to perception. Each installation activates a heightened sensory awareness that promotes discovery: what seems to be a lustrous, suspended cube is actually the conjunction of two flat panels of projected light; a rectangle of radiant color hovering in front of a wall is really a deep, illuminated depression in the space; a velvety black square on the ceiling is, in reality, a portal to the night sky. With such effects, Turrell hopes to coax the viewer into a state of self-reflexivity in which one can see oneself seeing.”James Turrell, Night Passage, 1987 Guggenheim MuseumRectangular cut in partition wall, fluorescent and tungsten lamps, and fixturesGuggenheim Museum
  25. 25. “Throughout history, the artist has been a shaper of matter, whether the pigment of an image or the solid substance of sculpture. A Frontal Passage, like other works by Turrell, breaks from those ancient traditions in that it has no mass. Instead, Turrell shapes light.”James Turrell, Frontal Passage, 1994 Museum of Modern ArtMOMA
  26. 26. “To view A Frontal Passage, the visitor passes through a darkened entryway into a chamber, also dark—but divided diagonally by a radiant yet crisply defined wall of red light. Instead of diffusing freely from one side of this wall to the other, the light ends abruptly in space, as if it had density. The power of the work lies in this paradox, in which nothingness gains physical presence.” Museum of Modern ArtJames Turrell, Frontal Passage, 1994MOMA
  27. 27. ”My work is more about your seeing than it is about my seeing” James TurrellJames Turrell, Frontal Passage, 1994MOMA
  28. 28. California Lightand SpaceMovementTurrell’s most recent project isRoden Crater -- an extinct volcanothat the artist is transforming into acelestial observatory James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
  29. 29. James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
  30. 30. James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
  31. 31. James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
  32. 32. James Turrell, Roden Crater, near Flagstaff, Arizona
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