Robert Smithson, Amarillo Ramp (1973)
Tecovas Lake, Amarillo, Texas
Diameter: 140 ft. (42.67 meters); Maximum height: 15 ft. (4.57 meters)
Photograph: Gianfranco Gorgoni
© Holt/Smithson Foundation/Licensed by VAGA at ARS, New York
Constructed to emerge from the base of an artificial lake, Amarillo Ramp now lies in a driedup basin, its original structure altered by erosion. It is Smithson’s final earthwork - while surveying the site in 1973, Smithson was killed in a plane crash. The sculpture was posthumously completed by Nancy Holt and fellow artists Tony Shafrazi and Richard Serra. Overgrown with mesquite, its once-defined edges sloping into the earth, Amarillo Ramp is a solemn illustration of entropy.