Friday, February 27, 2009
Tacita Dean's Visit to Spiral Jetty in 1999
From Phaidon's Tacita Dean publication:
"The irony with Smithson is that I didn’t really know his work very well when I went on that quest [Trying to Find the Spiral Jetty], which is a surprise, an embarrassing surprise in a sense because I wasn’t very clued up. There has been a huge Smithson revival in the last few years since I made that journey. A lot of people have been going to Spiral Jetty since it surfaced, so it is all a bit trampled now. What happened was that I was at Sundance in Utah and it was chance thing that someone in NY said they’d heard that Smithson Spiral Jetty had risen. I decided that was what I had to do. I had the directions faxed from the Utah Arts Council and just made this journey. I wasn’t even making an artwork at that point. I was just going to see it out of interest. But for some curious, unconscious reason, I put my DAT recorder on, because I had been recording my discussion with people in Sundance. So I had it with me and just started it at number ten of the 12-oint directions provided by the Arts Council. I subsequently realized that I had to make it into a sound work, because something about that journey had been so extraordinary. It has been sort of transitional in a way, but I had to fabricate points one to ten. So that is why it became, in a way, a fiction. I play with the line between fact and fiction quite a lot."