The joy and surprise of encountering it differently each time, either submerged or lying in the water, either covered with white salt in the pink shimmering brine or—as in the past two summers—dark against the grey crusty bottom of the lake, with the brackish water having receded almost a hundred meters, has been coupled with incomprehension and increasing annoyance since the beginning of the new millennium.
Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in as 3 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr. Provenance This interview is part of the Archives' Oral History Program, started in to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.
Funding Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service. Transcript Preface The following oral history transcript is the result of a tape-recorded interview with Robert Smithson on July 14 and 19, Nancy Holt is also present.
You were born in New Jersey? Yes, in Passaic, New Jersey. Did you come from a big family? Did you grow up there, go to school there? What happened was I was born in Passaic and lived there for a short time.
We moved to Rutherford, New Jersey. William Carlos Williams actually was my baby doctor in Rutherford. We lived there until I was about nine and then we moved to Clifton, New Jersey to a section called Allwood. I guess around that time I had an inclination towards being an artist.
Were you making drawings? I was working in that area even back in the early phases in Rutherford. Well, how did you like all the business of moving around all the time? Actually we moved only twice: I was very interested in that time in natural history.
Where did these shells come from? We traveled a lot at that time. Right after the war in we went out West. I was about eight years old. It was an impressionable period. I started to get involved in that at that time. But basically I was pretty much unto myself.
I was very much interested in, you know, field naturalist things, looking for insects, rocks and whatever. Did you have any books around that were involved with these topics?
And I went to the museum of Natural History. When I was, I guess, about seven I did very large paper constructions of dinosaurs which in a funny way I suppose relate right up to the present in terms of the film I made on The Spiral Jetty. I used the prehistoric motif running through that.
So in a funny way I guess there is not that much different between what I am now and my childhood. I really had a problem with school. I mean there was no real understanding of where I was at. Did you like primary school or high school? I grew up rather hostile to that.
In high school actually I started going to the Art Students League. I won a scholarship to that. In my last year of high school I managed to get only half a day.Robert Smithson, Spiral Jetty, ,.. Smithson most celebrated work is the Spiral Jetty which was constructed on the shores of the Great Salt Lake in Utah in This spiral mound of earth and boulders stretches about meters into the lake and is about meters wide.
Nonsites, about which, he wrote in a footnote to a text on Spiral Jetty, "The land or ground from the Site is placed in the art (Nonsite) the essay "The Spiral Jetty," and a few other related works. As he created and exhibited his Nonsite equivalents of the sculpture, Smithson never granted clear Robert Smithson, Spiral Jetty, Using the first photos of the spiral jetty after its completion as a source to compare the condition of the piece in its surroundings at the time of origin in with its state in , and supplementing them with information from the text component of the work, the essay The Spiral Jetty from , in which Smithson precisely characterizes.
The Source of Robert Smithson’s Spiral. In , shortly before Smithson died, “When he built ‘Spiral Jetty,’ Robert Smithson .
In his essay on Spiral Jetty, Smithson recalled his first impression of the area. “As I looked at the site,” he remembered, “it reverberated out to the horizons only to suggest an immobile cyclone while flickering light made the entire landscape appear to quake. Spiral Jetty from atop Rozel Point, in mid-April It was created in and still exists although it has often been submerged by the fluctuating lake level.
It consists of some tons of basalt, earth and salt.