Maybe the Ninety-nine Percenters and the Occupy Movement have some things right within the mix of their unfocused ideas. There are certain issues that some of them espouse that I am in agreement with. There is a disparity of wealth in our society and for some it seems to be getting worse.
Then, there is the rock story.
There have been many things that have made me question the sanity, shall we say, or the good sense of people when it comes what they do with money. Certain agencies of government seem to have no qualms about delegating our dollars to projects and concepts that we ourselves would deem absolute waste. Yet it's like a person gets a position in government and when an absurd idea comes before them they will often say, "Oh that's a ridiculous idea, we should fund this with tax dollars."
Okay, maybe it's not that bad, but it sometimes seems like this is what is going on. I'm sure you can think of some examples of what I'm talking about.
But back to the crazy rock story. And I'm not talking about something some wild rock and roller ever did--those antics would be conservative and logical compared to the Los Angeles rock.
The rock in this story is a 340 ton boulder that has been transported from a quarry in Riverside, California one hundred or so miles away to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Traversing city streets over a period of a couple of weeks as it made its way to the museum, the rock was all over the news and brought gawkers from miles around who wanted to see this rock.
At the museum the rock will be fitted into an installation where it will appear to be levitated. Viewers will be able to walk under it and experience this amazing creation of artist Michael Heizer.
But really, Heizer may have come up with this inane idea, but he did not create the rock and I would hesitate to call this art. Maybe something like this might be more worthy of a science museum, but I think this is a pretty weird idea.
For me the worst part is the ten million dollar cost of moving the rock and all other expenses entailed in setting this thing up. I wonder how much they're paying this Heizer guy to do this?
Granted this project is not costing the taxpayers money--presumably. I'm sure some taxpayer expenses were incurred in the logistics surrounding the transport of the rock, not to mention possible road damage. However, a major emphasis has been made that the rock installation is being fully funded by private donors.
Still I can't help but wonder about this much money being used to move a big rock and make it look like it's suspended where people can walk under it. Will those people really recognize it as "art" or something that's just kind of weird, amazing, or cool? Art? I think not.
It seems like the ten million could have been better spent on things that would be more helpful to society. If they want to spend money on art, why not fund art programs in the schools? Wouldn't the money be better spent in developing businesses with long range plans of creating jobs and recycling more money into the economy? Aren't there plenty of people and organizations that would be more benefited by this money than a big giant rock?
I don't know much about Michael Heizer, but I would question some of the value of his "earth art" and silly projects like "Levitated Mass". What ever happen to artists who took big rocks and actually carved out works of sculpture?
Special post will appear here on Sunday with Jeffrey Beesler making a stop on his blog tour for his new book Spell of Entrapment. Be sure to drop by.
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