Moving Earth
"Museums are tombs, and it looks like everything is turning into a museum.” - Robert Smithson
Final Quiz Jeopardy?
Robert Smithson, Mirage One, 1967.











1968 Earthwork movement launched by
group exhibition "Earthworks" at the Dawn Gallery
Earthworks = (a.k.a. Land art) form of art which came to prominence in the late 60s and 70s primarily concerned with the natural environment. Materials such as rocks, sticks, soil, and plants are commonly used, and the works frequently exist in the open and are left to change and erode under natural conditions.
Robert Smithson essay A Sedimentation of the Mind: Earth Projects provided a critical framework for the movement
Robert Smithson, Nonsite, 1968.











Spiral Jetty

Robert Smithson, Spiral Jetty, 1970.























Sprial Jetty film stills

Robert Smithson, Documentation of film stills from Spiral Jetty, 1970.











Robert Smithson's Spiral Jetty made pink by algae in the Great Salt Lake, 2011











Robert Smithson, Partially Buried Woodshed, 1970.











Partially Buried Woodshed
Partially Buried Woodshed
Partially Buried Woodshed
Robert Smithson, Partially Buried Woodshed, 1970 to present day.
in progress
January 1970
current state











Entropy = 1) a measure of the amount of energy in a physical system that cannot be used to do work; a thermodynamic quantity representing the unavailability of a system's thermal energy for conversion into mechanical work, often interpreted as the degree of disorder or randomness in the system. 2) lack of order or predictability; gradual decline into disorder.
ice water
Related to the Second Law of Thermodynamics = the idea that energy dissipates toward a disintegrated homogeneity of matter. Entropy negates the concept of progress on the scale of geological time.
a classic example of entropy described in 1862 by Rudolf Clausius as an increase in the disgregation of the molecules of the body of ice.











National Guard descneding on protesters at Kent State University May, 1970.











Kent State

John Paul Filo, 14-year-old Mary Ann Vecchio kneels over the dead body of Jeffrey Miller, who was shot by the Ohio National Guard during the Kent State shootings, 1970.


Kent State student Alan Canfora speaks about the shooting of Jeffrey Milller





















Mexican Professor Protesting with 43 Chairs, November, 2014.
His sign reads, “I can’t teach, I’m missing 43. I don’t want you to go missing next.”











Double Negative

Double Negative

Michael Heizer, Double Negative, 1968 - 1970.
Center for Land Use Interpretation, Michael Heizer, Double Negative present day











Michael Heizer, Levitated Mass, 2012.











Nancy Holt, Sun Tunnels, 1976.





















Lightning Field

Walter De Maria, Lightning Field, 1977.











Roden Crater

Roden Crater Oculus
James Turrell, Roden Crater, Begun 1972.
The Oculus of the Roden Crater











Walter de Maria, 50 Cubic Meters of Dirt, 1968.