Road Trip

This story begins many moons ago,
 when I was just a young pup, in college. 
One lovely day, whilst sitting in my Art History class, the teacher taught us about an Earthwork Sculpture in Utah.  This sculpture, by artist Robert Smithson, is called the Spiral Jetty.
   While Smithson’s other artwork was a little too freaky-deaky for me, I fell in love with the Spiral Jetty.  The thoughts of earth made into an art piece that was constantly changing, constantly being acted upon by nature and man, struck me.
  Over the years (and years…and years) I have often looked at pictures of the jetty. It was built during a drought in the 70’s and then was submerged for 30-ish years when the lake returned to normal.  Some of those years it was difficult to see.
  Last week we heard a news report that many of the boats at the Great Salt Lake were stuck at the docks because the water level was so low. I looked at Jeff (who knew about the Jetty because I MADE him know) and he knew that it was time.
This morning we loaded up our little (HA!) family and headed out on our grand adventure.
Jeff had looked it all up, printed off maps, and planned the day. 
First was the 2 and 1/2 hour drive to Promontory Point to the Golden Spike museum.
 The museum was pretty cool! Not only because of the history involved, but because it had the only Restrooms for about 40 miles.  
  The Spiral Jetty was about 15 or so miles from the museum, but it takes you about 45 minutes to get there. You start off driving on a nicely paved road that quickly turned into a gravel road, then a partly graveled road, to a dirt road with softball sized rocks and dried mud holes.
  The last stretch of the drive is a dirt “road” with giant basalt rocks on each side, and in the middle of the road. 
 We had to put the SUV into 4-wheel drive!
 It was nearly puke inducing.
  When I caught my first glimpse of the sculpture I teared up.
  Teen daughter mocked me.
 There wasn’t any water near it. White, hard, dry salt flats surrounded the black spiral.

 In the center of the Spiral
we made our own little sculpture.
 It was hard to get a family pic because the sun reflecting off of the surrounding salt flats was blinding!


Love, Jana

8 thoughts on “Road Trip

  1. It is, indeed, amazing!

    The first time (okay, that was the only time) I went to the Tate museum, I didn't even realize what was in their collection, and would turn a corner and be faced with artwork I'd read about and seen pictures of all my life–spent a lot of time in tears there. The same thing every time I've been to The Chicago Art Institute. It's like, I don't know what. Seeing an old friend?

    It's no wonder the guards follow me around . . .

    Seriously, that's an amazing thing there!


  2. Jana, I just happened to follow a link here–didn't know that you blog! Anyway, had to tell you that Todd and I made the trek to see this a few years ago and just loved it. Looking forward to seeing it again next spring! You might really enjoy the Lightning Field in New Mexico, too. And if you come to NYC tell me and I'll send you to see more Earth Art like this. Lots of good stuff. Also (and on an entirely different topic), my cat swallowed a needle when I was in my last week of design school. They were able to retrieve it with an endoscope, but it wasn't much fun. Glad you're ok!


  3. I'm amazed at how large it is. I did not expect that.
    I had childhood memories of the Great Salt lake and made a point to stop and take the kids about 6 years ago……all I can say is YUCK! Not the way my memories had recalled it.


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