Previously Unpublished Nancy Holt Interview with Builders of Amarillo Ramp Now Available

In 1973 Nancy Holt conducted interviews with two individuals that helped to create Robert Smithson's Amarillo Ramp in Amarillo, Texas. We are delighted to make this previously unpublished tape available for the first time.⁠⁠
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The first interview on the tape is with a yet-to-be-identified individual. During this conversation they share thoughts on the local climate and geography, and the effect the seasons will have on the artwork. If you have any information on the yet-to-be-identified speaker at the beginning of the tape, please do get in touch with us at Holt/Smithson Foundation.

In the second interview—featuring Sid Feck, whom Holt credits in The Making of Amarillo Ramp as the front loader operator—they discuss how it felt to drive the machinery out onto the end of the ramp, the color of the stone and process of selecting the stone, and the relationship of the work to "old mother earth." 
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Amarillo Ramp is Smithson’s final earthwork; while surveying the site in 1973, Smithson was killed in a plane crash alongside pilot Gale Ray Rogers and photographer Robert E. Curtin. The sculpture was posthumously completed by Nancy Holt and artists Tony Shafrazi and Richard Serra, with help from a local team of heavy-machine operators who are featured in these interviews.⁠⁠

Click here to listen to the audio tape and read the transcript.
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Still from Nancy Holt, The Making of Amarillo Ramp (1973/2013)

16 mm film

Color, sound

Duration: 31 minutes, 52 seconds

©Holt/Smithson Foundation, Licensed by VAGA at ARS, New York. Distributed by Electronic Arts Intermix.

Archived News

"Nancy Holt / Inside Outside" at Bildmuseet

We are very pleased to announce the exhibition Nancy Holt / Inside Outside launches this June, produced by Bildmuseet, one of Sweden’s foremost contemporary art venues. The exhibition explores the artist’s rich artistic legacy through a selection of works spanning 1967 to 1992. This is the most ambitious exhibition of her work to date. Perceptions and demarcations of being "inside" and "outside" guide this survey exhibition.

Robert Smithson works in "The Power of Wonder" at Museum unter Tage in Bochum, Germany

Works by Robert Smithson will be included in the group exhibition The Power of Wonder: New Materialisms in Contemporary Art at Museum unter Tage in Bochum, Germany. 

Two artworks that Robert Smithson originally made during his time in Germany in 1969 will be on view in the exhibition: Mirror Displacement: Indoors (1969) and Essen Earth  and Mirrors (for Bernd and Hilla Becher) (1969).

"Second Site" by James Nisbet

Author and art historian James Nisbet has recently written a new book titled Second Site, which explores "how environmental change and the passage of time transform the meaning of site-specific art." Second Site examines the effect of changing conditions on a number of site-specific artworks, including both Nancy Holt's Sun Tunnels (1973-76) and Robert Smithson's 

Discussions On "Sound As Sculpture"

A significant selection of audio works by Nancy Holt are currently on view in the group exhibition Sound as Sculpture at The Warehouse Dallas

The Warehouse is hosting a series of discussions on the exhibition Sound As Sculpture, including one upcoming discussion on Nancy Holt's sound works with Lisa Le Feuvre and James Nisbet this Friday, March 18.

Tuesday Texts: Chapter Three

We are delighted to announce that throughout February we will be publishing a third chapter of our Tuesday Text Series as part of our ongoing Scholarly Text Program, which invites thinkers to focus on a single artwork by Holt and/or Smithson.

Every Tuesday we will publish a text to our website that includes images selected by the author, a short bibliography, citation reference, and endnotes pointing to the author’s references.