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How LACMA Will Move One of the Heaviest Rocks Ever Moved

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Photos by Elizabeth Daniels

Yesterday, in a dusty quarry out in Riverside County, LACMA's 340 ton rock got ready to roll all the way over to the Miracle Mile, where it'll sit on top of steel rails spanning a 456 foot long trench on the north lawn of the Resnick Pavilion. The boulder will be the namesake for Michael Heizer's enormous "Levitated Mass" sculpture. LACMA director Michael Govan tells the LA Times that "this is one of the largest monoliths that's ever been moved."

To make it happen, Emmert International, "a company that specializes in moving 'extreme objects' like nuclear generators and missiles," is building this transporter (in Renzo Piano red!) around the boulder. A road will be carved out of the quarry, and the transporter will move at night, on closed roads, with a police escort, at under 10 mph. Some utility lines and stop lights will have to come down for a short time as the boulder passes by. As you can probably imagine, the permitting for this has been a nightmare, involving the state, three counties, and all the local municipalities.

The boulder is set to leave Riverside on October 3 and arrive in seven to ten days. "Levitated Mass" should still open in mid-November. Govan tells the LAT that the entire piece costs in the "single digit millions, more than five and less than 10," and is coming from private donors, including Hanjin Shipping, which is covering most of the transportation.
· LACMA set to roll away the stone [LAT]
· How LACMA Will Levitate a 340 Ton Boulder [Curbed LA]

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