Heizer "City" Is Off the Grid
|Google maps route of a hypothetical road trip from Los Angeles to Heizer's City (which Google inexplicably identifies as "Lincoln County School District")|
There's no real "city" nearby, not even an Interstate highway or cell phone service. City is in south-central Nevada and would be nearly a four-hour drive from Las Vegas if you were allowed to drive there directly. Instead, visitors will be required to make advance reservations ($150) and board a shuttle in Alamo, NV (pop. 1142). Google estimates that the drive from Alamo to City is itself 2 hours, 19 minutes. Alamo has four motels and some truck stops.
It's not necessarily a bad thing for a contemplative work to be at a remove from our world of distractions. But City is more off the grid than Spiral Jetty, say, and having a car overheating in a desert without cell service is no joke. It's doubtless such concerns that have motivated the visitor restrictions. A four-member museum consortium—LACMA, Crystal Bridges, Glenstone, and MoMA—have committed to "ensuring the financial and operational sustainability" of City going forward.
In case you're wondering, Heizer's Double Negative (run by MOCA) is not close enough for a realistic side trip. It's a 1:45 drive from Alamo or 4 hours from City. Unlike City, Double Negative is already open, free, and doesn't require reservations. But MOCA warns visitors to avoid traveling alone and to notify an outside party of their expected return time.
Meanwhile, LACMA has a lot on its own plate in "ensuring...financial and operational sustainability."
Something about my visit to Louvre World in Orlan...uh...Paris made me more uneasy about LACMA's Pereira/1986 setup. But the museum's lack of transparency and what should be qualms about its own "financial sustainability" continue to make me suspicious about what's going on.
Heizer's installation piece (or whatevah category it's labeled as) should be the last thing LACMA is worried about.
The Louvre is hardly the model for transparency.
The Getty should buy it.
The collection will be auctioned this fall.
I never said it was. The "Louvre World" quip was because that museum is so large and continuous (and also made me think of amusement parks in Florida) that, by contrast, the "tract house" nature of 1965/1986 LACMA was really run home to me.
The Govan/Zumthor pile would be somewhat okay if at least its budget, square footage and operational issues weren't a black hole.