summer flowers

summer flowers

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Spiral Jetty

Last Sunday we drove up to the Spiral Jetty.  It is about a 3 hour drive from my house and the last 20 miles are on dirt roads.  The "Earth Art" piece was done in the 1970's by Robert Smithson and it was the last piece he did before he died, I think.  When I have looked at national and some international art books, this piece is the only thing that gets Utah into the book.
This is a view from the "parking lot".

A few years after it was built, the lake level rose and it was under water for about 3 decades!   When is was visible again, we tried to drive up to see it.  There were no signs and we went down badly maintained dirt road and kept coming to gates with "No Trespassing" signs.  It was not until the second drive up that we finally got to it.  It was still bad roads and slow driving on them.  

Since the jetty had been under a very salty lake for years, all the rocks were covered with about 1" of salt crystal.  It was amazing to see, a crystalline white spiral coming out of a lavender lake.  Yes, the water looked was like being on a different planet.  When we came home it took me several weeks and many calls to find out why the water was so pink (the lavender was from the blue sky reflecting in the pink water.)  The lake is even more salty in the north end and the algae that grow there periodically "bloom" and give the water a pink color.  In the drying ponds where the salt level is higher, it is a red colored water!

Unfortunately,  this trip the pink color was just barely there.  With all the internet checking we did, there was not a sure time to see the bloom.  But the dirt road is much improved, there are signs to help you get there and although the place is posted for no trespassing, we did not come to any gates.  We had a great time walking around the spiral, taking pictures of the rocks and water and looking at the jetty.

Here my son is getting a picture.
I look for color combinations that I can use for weaving.
Here you can see a pinkish color in the water
Shades of gray in the shore rocks..
The rock used for the jetty and all along the shore is black basalt.  Along the shore, where the water has receded, there are gray and white rocks from the salt coating.  It makes another area of colors to use in my projects.

When we were walking back to the car,  my son took off into the lake.  I think he wanted to see how far he could go until it got too deep.  It was quite shallow and he found a place that had a rock near the surface.  In the picture he looks like he is practicing walking on water...
My son walking on water
In the picture he is several hundred feet from shore, straight out from where the spiral makes it's first curve.  It was interesting to see him "floating" out there in the water.  My camera is not that clear and I needed to zoom out all the way to see him.

I have been making felt yardage, and not doing much weaving.  The current project on the loom is a test for a shawl in Bronson Lace.
The lace should open up when the piece is washed.  But at this point, I am always worried that the fabric will disintegrate when I put it is water.