Everything You Need to Know About James Turrell's Light Art Installations Through His Greatest Works

Afrum (White), 1966

Turrell wanted to give as much worth to light as people give to material objects. In his efforts to make light recognized as a medium, he's also meant to make it material and tangible. Afrum (White) set the precedent for the perception-straining light "objects." Two projected beams of light came together to create what appeared to be a floating white cube. Turrell would become so good at this practice of creating seemingly material things out of light that, during an exhibition at the Whitney in 1980, a woman leaned against one of his "walls" of light, thinking it would support her. She fell backwards, breaking her wrist. She eventually sued the artist.

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