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Spiral Jetty could soon be Utah's official 'work of art'

By Alex Cabrero | Posted - Feb. 3, 2016 at 10:01 p.m.


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SALT LAKE CITY — Utah has an official flower, tree, and even an official gun.

Soon, Utah may also have an official work of art.

It's hard to put into words exactly why so many people from across the world travel to the Spiral Jetty.

Of course, the easy answer is that it's a work of art.

But it's more than just that.

"There's something about how landscape creates emotion in humans and their human story," said Colleen Kwok.

Kwok, a student at New York University, has felt the pull of the Jetty ever since she saw a documentary on it years ago.

On Wednesday, she and some of her friends visited the Spiral Jetty to take some video for a future film of her own as part of an art project for her senior thesis on the place.

"An art piece is not in a gallery or in some sort of limitation, but outside in nature," said Kwok.

The Spiral Jetty is considered land art, and is arguably the most popular piece of land art in the world. Because of that, Rep. Rebecca Edwards, R-North Salt Lake, has introduced legislation to make the Spiral Jetty Utah's official work of art.

"We really are unique in the sense that we are the only state that has the Jetty," said Edwards.

The Spiral Jetty was created in 1970 in the northeastern part of the Great Salt Lake by artist Robert Smithson, using rocks from the hillside above. Having an official declaration gives the place more attention, and gravity as a place of importance.

"It's an opportunity for us to brag as a state," Edwards said. "It's an opportunity for us to highlight something that really is unique."

The next step to make the Spiral Jetty Utah's official work of art will unfold on Tuesday, when it will be voted on in the Utah House of Representatives. Tuesday also happens to be Art Day at the Utah State Capitol.

Contributing: Xoel Cardenas

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Alex Cabrero

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