PRINT May 2014


Nancy Holt

Nancy Holt shooting the film Sun Tunnels, 1978, Lucin, UT. Photo: Lee Deffebach.

NANCY HOLT completed her earth time on February 8. She remains an enduring influence for those of us who knew her and for those of us who continue to experience her work.

I first met Nancy in 1966 with her husband, the artist Robert Smithson. Bob was one of the early proponents of Minimal art and Land art, two movements that prevailed among the artists I showed at Dwan Gallery in New York and Los Angeles. At that time, Nancy was reticent about her work, while Smithson’s art moved to the forefront. It is only in retrospect that I realized Nancy actually spearheaded those movements—and that in fact, she was actively writing poetry, filming, and photographing all along.

In 1967, the three of us traveled together on a number of excursions through the mid-Atlantic region from New Jersey to Virginia, in search of available land for potential Earthworks. Nancy was the intrepid driver

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