Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Turrell's Skyspace at Rice, unbelievably wonderful...

...in the daytime, what will it be like at dusk or twilight. That requires another visit and excitedly so.

As I walked toward this art installation, I wanted to look at it, take it all in, admire the simple genius of it, the other part of me wanted to run toward it and be absorbed by it. I compromised, walking at quicken pace without taking my eyes of it for a second, I arrived just at the perfect time and with all my tactical senses on alert. I entered the chamber on ground floor, feeling embraced, at home. I then climbed the stairs to the second floor, sat down, immediately stilling my mind, feeling the smooth concrete surface with my hands, relaxing. The experience is calming and invigorating all at the same time. The clean lines take away the clutter. The breeze easily flows through, shaded, the temperature is about 10 degrees cooler. Nice for getting out of the Houston heat.  I think being there during a rain storm would be a thrill. Mmmmm. The possibilities just keep coming.

Skyspace is open to the public and is situated on the Rice University campus between the Shepherd School of Music and the Jones School of Business. A grass bern surrounds the structure. It certainly grabs the interests of kids. I wonder if they understand that they are running up a piece of art.  Does it matter? Experiencing it is what matters at any age and at any point in the day. Maybe the next time I am there, I will get the gumption to run up the hill, barefoot.

Beside being delightful place to sit, this space is a companion to the Shepherd School of Music, designed for small concerts. Wouldn't it be a blast to experience music rising through to the opened sky? That would be the icing on the cake, the sour cream, chives and bacon on the baked potato, the strawberries on top of cheesecake. (Okay, I had to get some food references in there somewhere.)

The roof reflects the green from the bern. At night lights shoot up from around the inside of the structure. I don't know if they change color, but I will be finding that out soon.

This isn't the first experience I've had with James Turrell's art. He has another installation at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, called "The Light Inside." This installation is in the Wilson Tunnel between the two main MFA galleries. Again an art installation that is interactive, one that disorients me a bit, but changes my perceptions of space and how it can change with colored light. I purposely choose to cross from one building to the next using the tunnel. The experience of it never gets old and I feel or observe something different every time I go through it; much like "Skyspace" will do, I'm sure of it.

Rice University
6100 Main Street,
Houston, TX 77005
Quote of the day: 
"Light is not so much something that reveals, as it is itself the revelation."
James Turrell  

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