Canberra: ‘Within without’ (Australia)

Within without

Parkes Pl E, Parkes ACT 2600

James Turrell (2010)

My work is about space and the light that inhabits it. It is about how you confront that space and plumb it with vision. It is about your seeing, like the wordless thought that comes from looking into fire. — James Turrell

The works of James Turrell straddle the world of art and architecture. Maybe sometimes they inspire architects to think with more clarity about how they engage with space and light.

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 05_Stephen Varady Photo ©

This piece was built in the garden of the National Gallery of Australia (NGA) in Canberra in 2010. As Turrell states, his work has always been about space and light, where he creates a ‘framework’ for people to be able to experience and contemplate both.

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 11_Stephen Varady Photo ©

In Canberra, Turrell has created a mound into which the observer can walk. Inside the space is shaped like the inside of a pyramid with the top cut off. At the centre is a Stupa made of Victorian basalt stone, surrounded by water.

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 35_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 14_Stephen Varady Photo ©

The stupa is one of Turrell’s ‘Skyspaces’ – with an oculus in the centre of the ceiling, allowing the sun to shine in, and allowing visitors to see a framed view of the sky.

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 31_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 26_Stephen Varady Photo ©

This is a place for contemplation, for looking up at the sky and observing the light; watching as the sun moves across the space; looking up at the changing colour of the sky; sitting and focusing on something you see every day and perceiving it in a way you might not normally do.

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 27_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 29_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 33_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 34_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Within without, Canberra by James Turrell 39_Stephen Varady Photo ©

 

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Place: ‘Within without’ NGA

Architect: James Turrell

Photographer: Stephen Varady

Map: Within without, NGA

 

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2 thoughts on “Canberra: ‘Within without’ (Australia)

  1. Nice post Stephen For some reason only known to me I didnt know this is a permanent piece, must visit it. We saw a few Turrell installations in Japan recently – fab. tony

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