Glenturret, Lalique Release Rare Eight Decades Single Malt


May 23, 2023

The Glenturret Eight Decades Decanter

The Glenturret, Scotland’s Oldest Working Distillery, released Eight Decades, a collaboration with Lalique and renowned American artist James Turrell, who is famed worldwide for working with light and space to create artworks that engage viewers with the limits and wonder of human perception.  It is the first time the celebrated artist has worked on a whisky decanter, presented for the first time at the new Lalique Art Gallery in Burlington Arcade, London on May 16th.

The Eight Decades decanter is an ultra-limited-edition – just eighty worldwide – created as a celebration of the artist’s eightieth year and a poetic tribute to generations of craftsmanship – both The Glenturret distillery (since 1763), and Lalique’s master glassmakers (since 1888). Following the launch of two perfume bottles and beautiful light panels, this is the third time James Turrell has collaborated with Lalique, creating a perfect triptych; it is the first time that he has created pieces of art on a small scale, as his works are usually large-scale, immersive, temporary or in situ.

Realizing the artist’s vision for Eight Decades required an immense amount of design work, from drawings to mold manufacturing, hot glass trials and prototypes.  The shape and color of the bottle, which has a neck injected with violet crystal, created a technical difficulty for the Lalique artisans in the factory in Alsace, ensuring that the crystal be evenly distributed to offer a transparency that would magnify the amber-coloured whisky inside.

The final design has a pared down silhouette: flowing curves combined with tapered lines and a rectangular base. The pyramidal shape of the deep blue crystal stopper is inspired by Egypt and its monuments in which light served ceremonial purposes. 

“The collaboration with Lalique and James Turrell makes perfect sense when you recall that René Lalique was known as the ‘sculptor of light’,” Silvio Denz, CEO and Chairman of Lalique, said in a news release. “This collaboration brings together James Turrell’s universe, the house of Lalique and The Glenturret in an emotional journey and one of which I am extremely proud. An enduring approach to savoir faire and taste aligns with James Turrell’s understated, futuristic aesthetic. Eight Decades is the incarnation of excellence at every level – the perfect balance and a beautiful work of art – a celebration of individuals who contribute to the process over generations – a trophy in their honor.”

Inside, the whisky has been selected by The Glenturret’s Whisky Maker, Bob Dalgarno, using insight from his conversations with James. Drawn from eight casks, ranging from 1987 through to 1998, each represents a different facet of the eight decades of James Turrell’s life, his character and vocation.

“I love a single malt whisky,” Turrell said. “I described the whisky my father enjoyed as inspiration for the team at The Glenturret: my father’s description of civilization was a fine whisky and a good cigar. There is also the idea to relate the decanter to the work in crystal I have previously completed with Silvio and Lalique — I wanted this piece to have the same sensibility as the perfume bottles.  A tribute to Egypt, pyramids and stupas, these architectural forms are cross- cultural. They move something deep within me.”

Eight Decades, bottled at 41.5% ABV, is priced at £80,000 (approx. $100,000) and will be primarily available for pre-orders in May through [email protected] or by contacting your Lalique Boutiques on Conduit Street and in Burlington Arcade, London. 

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