james turrell & lalique design desert-inspired fragrances & undulating crystal light panels

james turrell & lalique share the same light & the same space

American light artist James Turrelfamous for his celestial spaceand French luxury brand Lalique working on a modern collection of crystal light panels and fragrances that will debut at Paris+ Art Basel October 20. James and René Lalique, known as “the sculptor of light”, share a collective admiration for being passionate about light and space. They attempt to alter human perception by artistically exploring beauty and life, and their reverence for their work, light and space springs forth in Crystal Light Panels, which feature 30 different color sequences designed to trigger a vibrational response. , and Ranger Rider and Purple Sage, two exclusive perfumes made for masculine and feminine respectively.

The Crystal Light Panels undulate to draw viewers into the shifting hues and lines they anchor, a look through the metaphorical meaning of intimacy that nurtures the soul. As James says, light is closely related to life and its photographic works made exclusively for Lalique ring in this life through diffusion and color change. For fragrances, Ranger Rider and Purple Sage reflect James’ pursuit of studying a Western novel that is dear to him. From the bottles to the scents, the perfumes are inspired by desert expanses and luminous horizons, and by the Great American West depicted by Zane Gray in his novel, Riders of the Purple Sage. For the shapes of the bottles, James turns to Egyptian architecture, noting the relationship of pyramidal structures to high light and spiritual value.

images courtesy of Lalique & James Turrell

James Turrell rediscovers the smell of the Colorado plateau

James Turrell seeks to discover the smell of the Colorado plateau and that of the purple sage that Zane Gray describes in his novel, Riders of the Purple Sage. The American artist then combines the scents to create an evocative scent of violet sage and old rubbed leather, ‘the same ones who cling to our guys when my wife Kyung and I return to our ranch,’ he adds.

The result turns into Ranger Rider and Purple Sage, a tribute to the novel Gray and James’ fragrance for men and women. Now that the scents have been concocted, refined and unveiled, James moves on to the shape of the bottles. The artist has long been fascinated by Egypt and stupa forms found in Asia, including Tibet, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Burma, China and Japan. He marvels at their architectural structure, noting the rigid lines and pointed tip of the pyramids, and observes how the light seeps in to play its role as the highly spiritual and precious character that underlines these architectural marvels.

James is inspired by this well and offers two models of bottles: one in the shape of Egyptian pyramids and the other forming a curved dome. James strives for a design that ensures the flow and cadence of light, while letting a slight coloring show through. He was present throughout production and even stopped in Wingen-sur-Moder, a French commune, to see the bottles come to life, an experience that reminded James René Lalique and how he started.

james turrell & lalique design desert-inspired fragrances & undulating crystal light panels
Ranger Rider Perfume

The Crystal Light Panels study the brilliance of crystal

Like a mentor for his mentee, James Turrel reminds its art lovers of the fluidity of crystal. “Of course, this is not obvious at room temperature”, he adds. Holding the glass, one may not immediately realize how beautiful the liquid inside is, instead focusing on the structure of the glass, the way the hand folds around it and the bottom tilts so that the person can drink until the last drop.

“Liquid crystals can take on a form and retain that form”, said James. “But after a hundred or two years, he succumbs to gravity. This is why we have to turn the lenses of telescopes. The character of the crystal comes from here in the foreground. It becomes a spiritual medium that possesses an understated brilliance, a material that creative people can play with. In his Crystal Light Panels, that’s exactly how James approached it. It manipulates it so well that viewers have to stop to check if what they’re looking at is overlapping or if it’s just a sphere in a single loop.

By explaining how his collaboration with Lalique came about, James touches on his ultimate goal in his art. His penchant lies in the light that people see when they close their eyes, the one that appears in their dream whether as a secondary character or a main character. He is interested in bringing the same light to life: the glow that is no longer another deja-vu phenomenon, the beam that shows itself even when people are awake, and the ray that grows in magnitude and value over time.

“We are quite ignorant of the power of light. I would like to return the light as an inspiration for things beyond, beyond what we think we know,’ he says. The light that James wants to produce, the very one that he created for the collection with Laliqueis all-encompassing: it envelops, it feels, it makes the viewer think, it reconfigures his being.

Sarah C. Figueiredo