A Turrell Projection is created by projecting a single, controlled beam of light from the opposing corner of the room. The projected light appears as a three dimensional form.
Shallow Space Constructions
A Turrell Shallow Space is viewed from the rear of a large room. A false wall is lit from behind and appears to float. Coving the corners of the walls and controlling the light challenges the viewer’s depth perception.
Corner Shallow Space
A Turrell Corner Shallow Space is created by removing the drywall in a predetermined shape in a convex corner. The shapes in this series are very similar to those in the Projection series. The light in this case is not projected but comes from within the wall. The effect is similar to a Projection in that the light creates the illusion of a three dimensional object.
In a Turrell Wedgework, the precise use of projected light creates the illusion of walls or barriers where none exist.
A Turrell Veil combines the use of natural and artificial light to create a slowly changing curtain, or veil, of light. Out of view is a skylight, the source of natural light, as well as the artificial light fixtures contributing subtle shades of color.
A Turrell Dark Space is an enclosed room with no seemingly perceivable light. After several minutes in darkness, the viewer’s eye will detect a faint light in the room. These works are very difficult to photograph. Viewers will exit a Dark Space work and all describe having a different experience. The concept of a Dark Space is not about what one is supposed to see but the experience of what Turrell describes as “seeing yourself see.”
Space Division Constructions
A Turrell Space Division (also called an ‘Aperture’ work) consists of a large, horizontal aperture cut into a wall. There is no glass. The aperture in a Space Division work appears to be a flat painting or an LED screen but is a light-emitting opening to a seemingly infinite, light filled room beyond.
“Ganzfeld”: a German word to describe the phenomenon of the total loss of depth perception as in the experience of a white-out. Turrell artificially creates a similar experience through the controlled use of light, coved corners and an inclined floor.
A Turrell Skyspace is a specifically proportioned chamber with an aperture in the ceiling open to the sky. Skyspaces can be autonomous structures or integrated into existing architecture. The aperture can be round, ovular or square.
Turrell’s Perceptual Cells Series are enclosed, autonomous spaces built specifically for one person at a time. If the sensation of claustrophobia is psychological, can one’s perception of space (or lack of) be influenced by light?
A Turrell Magnatron consists of a small aperture in the shape of an old television sceen. As in many of Turrell’s aperture works, there is no glass, but a shape.
Tall Glass / Wide Glass Series
A Turrell Tall Glass or Wide Glass piece is an aperture with frosted glass. LEDs are positioned behind the glass and programmed to change slowly over the course of several hours. A glass can also be curved. Each Tall Glass or Wide Glass light program is unique.
The hologram is a recording of light waves on a thin layer of transparent gelatin emulsion. In the emulsion is an image that has full parallax. In other words, it appears to have depth from every vantage point. The Turrell reflective holograms vary slightly in size but the finished product is about 18″ X 24″. The color, shape and inclination of the image is unknown until the final step of the process. Unlike traditional holograms that depict objects, the Turrell holograms aim to make a hologram of light itself.