Los Angeles, CA
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Buro Happold, with Artist Michael Heizer
Construction Manager / Owner's Rep
Rocking Out at LACMA
It was an epic production, millions of years in the making!
Well, the rock part was, anyway. And it took Earth Artist Michael Heizer decades to find just the right rock to realize his vision of Levitated Mass. Negotiating the permits to move the rock from the quarry in Riverside to LACMA took a year. Building the concrete slot and support system took months. Trucking the rock to the museum took over a week. Positioning it on the slot took days. And then at last: the ribbon cutting, the big reveal, the public surge: the grand finale took just a morning. Now Levitated Mass is part of our urban and cultural landscape. As an artwork it’s provocative—and that’s okay: art should be thought provoking; it should incite an emotional response. As for the engineering and construction, there’s no controversy; I’m just not sure if you should notice the workmanship or not, since the concrete slot was designed to be effectively unnoticed as it fades from the viewer’s conscious awareness. A conundrum, to be sure. Go see and experience Levitated Mass for yourself, and see how you respond. It’s at LACMA on the 6th Street side, conveniently close to the subterranean parking entrance.