We are not aware that we ourselves give the sky its colour. We think that everything is given, but we have an active part in creating the reality in which we live.
Oh, I was looking forward to this day: the Skyspace-Lech will finally open today! At the Arlberg we now have a work of art by the US-American light artist James Turrell.
11:30 am: with the Oberlech train to Oberlech and then with the Petersboden train on! A warm autumn day to ride the lift and already enjoy the beginnings of the colors in the landscape.12:00 o’clock: small hike to the Kriegeralpe where we take our lunch comfortably. The last “Horizon-Field Figure” looks at us from above.12:50 o’clock: Start to the hike over Waibermahd and Grubenalpe to the Skyspace-Lech.
13:20 o’clock: Approach to the Skyspace. There are already some visitors who admire the Skypace-Lech. We also approach the oval-shaped building and admire it from close up: The Skyspace-Lech is a few minutes walk from Oberlech on the alp “Tannegg”. The oval and vaulted building was largely erected underground in a hill: “In doing so, it meets the artist’s desire for as minimal an intervention in nature as possible,” explains Otto Huber, chairman of Horizon Field – Kunstverein Vorarlberg. A magnificent panorama opens up in front of the work of art, with a view axis stretching from the old hamlet of Bürstegg to the imposing summit of Biberkopf. In summer and winter a hiking trail passes by and the Skyspace-Lech is also easily accessible from the ski run to Oberlech.
Then the group goes outside, where Mr. Otto Huber, the chairman of the Horizon Field association, takes the floor. Mr. Huber explains the creation of the artwork. When Turrell visited Lech in September 2014, he was fascinated by the mountain landscape and found the place with its rough weather conditions “perfect”. The planning and construction took four years. Due to the compatibility of the explicit requirements of the artist and the explicit high alpine location, the realization of the work of art was a difficult task, but one that was perfectly accomplished. For example, the dome must be able to withstand enormous amounts of snow in winter.
Mr. Huber talks about the artist James Turrell, who cannot be there for health reasons. James Turrell is one of the most important contemporary artists. His work on the Skyspace series began in the 1970s and now comprises over 75 works of art around the world. In the Roden Crater, an extinct volcano in the Arizona desert, James Turrell works on the largest man-made work of art ever. According to astronomical calculations, he builds a network of skyspaces inside the crater in which natural and artificial light combine to create a unique sensual experience. The Skyspace-Lech also follows this artistic concept.
James Turrell was the first artist to be exhibited at the Kunsthaus Bregenz in 1997 and now returns to Vorarlberg after more than two decades.
Her Huber points out that the Skyspace Lech was only possible thanks to numerous donors and sponsors. In cooperation with Wolfgang Häusler and his gallery Häusler Contemporary, which also has Vorarlberg roots, the association succeeded in winning James Turrell over to the idea of a Skyspace in Lech. By selling 250 building blocks at a price of 1,000 Euro each, not only could a substantial part of the project budget be raised, but also a large community be won. In total, around 90% of the project budget was financed privately, and around 10% came from public funds. Special thanks go to BE Baumschlager Eberle, the community of Lech, Lech Zürs Tourismus, I+R Schertler, Gebrüder Rüf, Land Vorarlberg, Zumtobel Group, Doppelmayr Seilbahnen, EHG – Stahlzentrum, Generali Versicherung and all other supporters who can be found at https://www.skyspace-lech.com/partnerschaften/
I absolutely want to look at Skyspace-Lech again and enjoy the light installation in full peace. www.skyspace-lech.com/besuchen 18:00 hours: 18:00 hours: 18:00 hours.
18:00: in the new Leche church. A live – interview of James Turrell is on the program and actually he talks to us about canvas. He conducts an interview with Mr. Wulf Herzogenrath. He says, as he has often stressed: “We are not aware that we ourselves give the sky its colour”. He also promises that if he feels fit again, he will go to Lech again.
Mr. Huber then introduces the board of the association and thanks all those involved: he names many companies that have worked with him, as well as the Berger Alpe, which is the landowner at this location, and all sponsors who believed in the project and worked or financed it.
Mayor Ludwig Muxel is delighted with the new work of art in Lech and Governor Markus Wallner calls it a point of fascination: “Those who go into the mountains come a little closer to heaven and this closeness brings about something in people. Such places make us reflect about what we do and what we do, and that also does us good. The artist changes our perception with space and light. He thanks all those involved for their initiative, which he calls a calling card of architectural art.
Then the Lech Zürs Tourismus GmbH invites you to a cosy drink where I can only collect enthusiastic opinions.
20:00 hours Enthusiastic about the day, about the encounters, about the words and about what I have experienced, I go home happy and full of new energy.