Going to the De Young Museum in San Francisco in the Golden Gate Park is a great thing to do with out of town guests. It’s also a fun and uplifting trip to do a few times of year for us locals. I find it very inspiring! One piece that should be experienced is James Turrell’s Three Gems which is outside of the gallery and can easily be missed if you get wrapped up with all the wonderful art inside.
James Turrell’s piece is modeled on his other skyspaces, but this is the first one to use the stupa form. The sculpture is located on the grass-covered hill outside of the museum cafe. We traveled through a short tunnel and entered into a cylindrical space carved out of the hill. The retaining walls of this cylindrical space are formed out of concrete. At the center of this cylindrical space, we entered the round stupa through a door. You can sit on a stone bench that runs around the circumference of the skyspace and bask in the serenity of it all. Or you can stand like Ander and his mom did and tone in the space while peering up at the sky through an oculus cut in the roof. The sound was quite profound as it reasonated around us, so don’t forget to let loose with a few notes!