Actual Size and Actual Size: Munich Rotary

Michael Heizer’s ambitious, large-scale projects are often difficult to realize and just as difficult to document. In the documentation of his own work and of natural sites, the artist took a similarly radical approach by creating photographs and projections scaled to actual size.

Michael Heizer: Actual Size presents the artist’s large-scale photographic works in two galleries. In the Resnick Pavilion, Actual Size: Munich Rotary (1971)—shown for the first time in more than three decades—projects Heizer’s 1969 work Munich Depression, a displacement of 1,000 tons of soil from an unbuilt area near Munich, Germany. Installed in BCAM is a series of fifteen individual actual-size photographic prints of rocks in their natural environment that Heizer began in 1970.

Taken together, Levitated Mass and Actual Size make a statement about humanity that is both sweeping in scope and specific to our time. “We live in a world that’s technological and primordial simultaneously,” Heizer has said. “I guess the idea is to make art that reflects this premise.”

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