Doug Pray's documentary Levitated Mass is as much about the artwork (in the form of a 340-ton rock called "Levitated Mass") as it is about the city of Los Angeles as the rock made its way to its permanent home in LACMA.
Michael Heizer's 'Levitated Mass' at its permanent home in LACMA.
"I got a call from Jamie Patricof [one of the film's producers], who told me one day that LACMA wanted to move this gigantic boulder and it would take 10 nights. [En route] they would have to take down all the street lights, and I thought it was astounding for a contemporary art project to have this effect. I loved the idea partly because I’ve lived in LA for a some years and really wanted to make a portrait of L.A. and also because I’ve always had an affection for rocks and geology. So I got involved and pitched the idea to LACMA.," Pray tells Film Society of Lincoln Center. "Every night we were in a different part of the L.A. basin, which [has dozens of cities]. In some areas the terrain felt like ranch land, but then closer to the city you could be in a typical suburb that looks like China. L.A.’s always defied traditional definitions of being a city. The rock’s travel was as through-line between all these different communities."
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