December 01, 2020

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MAKlite, the exceptional permanent outdoor installation by the world-famous American artist James Turrell, now fills the MAK at Stubenring, after almost one year of modernization, with an even more intensive light.

In close cooperation with James Turrell, the latest LED technology was applied to the lighting technology, developed by the Florentine artificial lighting specialist Targetti, and the original color range was expanded to a multifaceted luminous play of colors based on current technical possibilities.

As part of the VIENNA ART WEEK 2018, MAKlite, the installation by James Turrell, was turned back on in the evening of 21 November 2018.

“Ever since 2004, MAKlite has made the MAK building at Vienna’s Stubenring a landmark of Austria’s museum scene and Vienna’s cityscape. We are delighted that MAKlite has been turned back on permanently and is even more impressive now in its “reloaded” version. We would especially like to thank all the donors who made this project possible on initiative of the MAK ART SOCIETY,” Christoph Thun-Hohenstein, General Director and Artistic Director of the MAK, stated on the occasion of the presentation of MAKlite in front of invited guests.

Turrell’s installation evenly illuminates the window openings of the MAK with intensive light and emphasizes the unique architecture of the building at Stubenring.

The glow radiating from the inside of the building to the outside becomes visible at twilight. It suggests an architectonic intervention impossible to achieve with conventional flood lights.

Turrell’s design, like a contemporary iconography, expresses both the architectural history of the museum and its objective with regard to content as an institution of art.

MAKlite was launched on 23 November 2004 and since then has imprinted itself into the public perception of the MAK.

Turrell developed the concept of MAKlite together with the former MAK Director Peter Noever in the context of the solo exhibition The other Horizon, which the MAK dedicated to James Turrell in 1998.

Furthermore, for the exhibition The other Horizon an eponymous Skyspace was developed, which was JAMES TURRELL: MAKlite RELOADED Page 2 set up in the park of the MAK Branch Geymüllerschlössel in Vienna’s 18th district at the same time as the installation on the façade of the MAK. The Skyspace can permanently be visited during the opening hours of the Geymüllerschlössel. James Turrell (* 1943) is one of the most influential artists of our times.

For more than half a century, he has been working with light and space and has been creating works of art which confront the viewer with the possibilities and limits of human perception. He gives space to light itself and creates seemingly floating spaces out of light.

For decades, James Turrell has been represented in the world’s leading museums and exhibition institutions. Turrell stretches the limits of metaphysics with the Roden Crater, one of the world’s most ambitious land art projects located in an extinct volcano in the midst of Arizona.


Image: James Turrell, MAKlite, 2004
Technical Adaption: 2018
Permanent light installation on the MAK façade
© Gerald Zugmann/MAK

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