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Thomas Dreher

 

Robert Smithson:
Broken Circle/Spiral Hill

Illustrations to "Robert Smithson: Land Reclamation and the Sublime":

Robert Smithson – "Broken Circle" (1971-72), and "Spiral Hill" (1971):
located at and in a quarry pond by Emmen/Netherlands (on the left side, west-south, under Emmermeer), at Oude Roswinkelerweg near Emmerschans:

Spirall Hill and Broken Circle


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 2008


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


Spirall Hill and Broken Circle 1994


The aerial photos are shot in 2008. The following sixth illustration was shot by Joep van Ruiten in November 2008. The next illustrations represent the state of the earthwork as the author found it in October 1994 (10/26/1994): "Broken Circle " was flooded. Els Bannenberg describes and illustrates the state of the earthwork in 1987: He found "Broken Circle " flooded, too. In 1994 shrubbery (now eliminated) made it difficult to recognize the outline of "Spiral Hill" and the spiral pathway to the top of "Spiral Hill" became overgrown. The contemporary path along the waterfront behind "Broken Circle" and before "Spiral Hill" didn´t exist in 1994. The hill on the other side of the quarrel pond (see the last three pictures) is removed now and the former two lakes became one. Van Ruiten writes about the present state: "Naarmate de omringende zandafgraving groter en groter wordt, lijkt het landartproject uit 1971 bij Emmerschans kleiner en kleiner te worden." ("The land art project of 1971 near Emmerschans appears to become smaller and smaller after the digging of more and more sand in the surrounding.") The changed context of the earthwork demonstrate comparisons of the first two arial photos presenting the contemporary state of the lake with the last illustration of "Broken Circle" in a little lake and a separate second lake in the background.
Each picture is stored in a wider size than presented above. Browsers offer to open the wider photos in separate windows.

Links:
Netherlandish documentation by rijksdienst voor archeologie, cultuurlandschap en momumenten: URL: http://www.projectenbankcultuurhistorie.nl/ projecten/broken-circle-en-spiral-hill (8.9.2011);
Sketch, ink and pencil on paper, 1971: URL: http://www.robertsmithson.com/ drawings/ spiral_hill_broken_circle_300.htm (23.10.2008);
photos in Flickr.com: URL: http://www.flickr.com/search/ ?s=int&q=%22broken+circle%22 +smithson&m=text (23.10.2008);
Location:
Google Maps: URL: http://maps.google.nl/ maps?q=52.808914+06.9289054+ (Landart+Spiral+Hill) (23.10.2008).
Googlesightseeing: URL: http://googlesightseeing.com/ maps? p=1441&c= &f=q&hl= en&ie= UTF8&ll= 52.808897,6.928607&spn =0.002357,0.007167&t =k&z=18&om=1 (10.2.2009)
Bing Maps: URL: http://www.bing.com/maps/?v= 2&cp= st0zd6hk9xpc&lvl= 16&dir=0&sty= b&where1= Emmen%2C%20Niederlande&form= LMLTCC (8.9.2011) .

 

Thomas Dreher, October 2008/February 2009/September 2011