Los Angeles has its own rock star. Now I know there are a lot of rock stars this city has produced in its history, but none like this one. That’s because this one is a rock — a real rock — a 340-ton granite rock that has taken up permanent residence at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art as a piece of modern innovative sculpture the artist, Michael Heizer, calls “Levitated Mass.” The imaginative display for this piece of rock includes a 456-foot-long passageway cut into the ground and back out on the other side beneath the 21-foot-high boulder, making it possible for visitors to walk completely under the rock and view it from the bottom against the usually blue southern California sky.
This particular rock star became famous in March of 2012, because of its 106-mile journey over 11 days from a quarry in Riverside to its new home. Eleven days to go 100 miles. You could walk it faster than that. The journey was notable for the sheer size and weight of the cargo, and the challenges that had to be overcome in simply transporting it to the museum. Along the way it was met by growing crowds of fans. The rock was becoming famous.
Regardless of what anyone thinks of it as art, I love the idea and the end result. The end result is something made by God put on display by man in the middle of what man has made. Some have said it makes a stark comparison in which the whole city, which can be seen in the background, can seem “fragile.”
I’m sure you have to be there to experience it. Photographs don’t do it justice. They don’t convey its size and weight. In a photograph, it just looks like a rock in front of a building. Up next to it – preferably underneath it – I’m sure is a different story. Something tells me God is probably getting a kick out of this.
“Art is made to memorialize time,” said the artist, when the piece was first introduced. “A culture is known by its art, not by its science.” Only in this case, it is God’s art that is being showcased, and I think that is nothing other than rock solid.
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand