Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Study for An End of the World No. 2, Part II

Before you read this entry, check out the post for Part 1 a little farther back on the blog.

The location of Jean Dry Lake Bed as a working space for Jean Tinguely's project was chosen for any number of reasons; Emily Scott posited that the site potentially functioned (for Tinguely) as an analogue for Yucca Flats, the site of numerous nuclear tests in the 1950s. As part of their research methodology and preparation for the project (and maybe some strange, misguided date night), would Jean and Niki have seen The Beast of Yucca Flats? I like to hope so. Tor Johnson cast as a defecting Russian scientist transformed into a monster by a nuclear explosion serving as inspiration for a self-destructive kinetic sculptural installation realized in the desert and then detonated? Perhaps.

Regardless, Jean Dry Lake Bed has been the location for numerous music videos, temporary projects, and while we were there, some awesome dirt biking. It was also the location of Michael Heizer's Rift 1, the first of his Nine Nevada Depressions, executed in 1968. More on Heizer soon.

Image: (top) stills from The Beast of Yucca Flats; (bottom) Michael Heizer, Rift 1 (1968), photo courtesy Jean-Pierre Hebert.

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