By land or by Chelsea
Fri Mar 23 2007
For years, I've been fantasizing about the perfect cross-country trip. Someday (hopefully before retirement), I'll find the time and a beat-up Winnebago and set off toward the Pacific. On the top of my must-see list are two land works: James Turrell's Roden Crater, just outside Flagstaff, Arizona, and Walter de Maria's Lightning Field in southwestern New Mexico—both awe-inspiring constructions in equally breathtaking landscapes. For the time being, while I won't get a chance to see my own shadow from the light of Venus (you can on a clear night at the Roden Crater), I don't have to pine for similarly affecting artworks here. Watching the dusk descend over Turrell's long-term installation at P.S.1 will always ensure a sublime experience, and this month, both Turrell and De Maria are having solo shows in Chelsea. Today, Turrell's exhibition "Light Leadings" opens at PaceWildenstein on 25th Street with a display of engulfing, holographic light works. Next Saturday, both Gagosian spaces in Chelsea will house De Maria's minimalist installations of stainless-steel rods. Of course, these works won't be attracting lightning from a wide-open sky, but with any luck they'll be drawing some electric NYC crowds.