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Michael Heizer’s ‘City’ to finally welcome public after 50 years

Artist Michael Heizer’s monumental sculpture, the City is finally complete after 50 years and is ready to welcome visitors from 2 September 2022. The construction of the incredible land sculpture started in 1970 and it is spread across the desert of Nevada in the US.

During the first year of its opening, only six visitors will be allowed per trip and will require prior registration.

Everything to know about the City

Pointers for visitors

For those eager to visit this mammoth creation, one must remember a few things. Since it is built on an absolutely open, rugged and barren terrain, entry will be allowed depending on desert weather conditions.

The lack of any shade or habitable structures makes it potentially dangerous for anyone coming without advance registration. This will amount to trespassing. Guests will be allowed on a first-come-first-serve basis and the period will only last till 1 November 2022.

A visit is priced at USD 150 for an adult, USD 100 for a student and is free for residents of Lincoln, Nye and White Pine, Nevada, counties, however, prior reservations are mandatory.

Requests for reservations for future visits can be sent in writing to info@tripleaughtfoundation.org.

Location of the City

A three-hour drive from the North of Las Vegas can take you to the barren sculpture site, situated about 257 km from the city. Situated in the far-flung region of Basin and the Range National Monument in Nevada, City is owned and operated by Nevada-based Triple Aught Foundation.

This dream project is one of the finest examples of contemporary modern land sculpting and was built by donations, amounting to USD 40 million, from various museums and galleries such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

City structure

Nearly 2.5 kilometre long and about a kilometre wide, the City is a huge complex of shaped mounds and depressions made of rocks, concrete and compact dirt. According to the Foundation’s website, “The City is intentionally reminiscent of many ancient ceremonial constructions through its complexity and size, but its form is suggestive of the central hub or nucleus of a modern city.”

The website also mentions that the City is built on “ancestral territories of the Nuwu (Southern Paiute) and Newe (Western Shoshoni), who lived in and around the vicinity and call this land home, as their ancestors did before them.” It is primarily constructed of eco-friendly locally available elements that evoke the sense of great ancient Egyptian worship sites and Mesoamerican metropolises.

The whole sculpture doesn’t have many covered structures and thus diverts the visitors’ attention to each groove and mound that allows an interplay of light and shade.

(Main and feature image credit: ©Triple Aught Foundation 2022, all images ©Michael Heizer)

Michael Heizer’s ‘City’ to finally welcome public after 50 years

Trinetra Paul

Trinetra is an ardent foodie and bibliophile who writes about films, travel, food and lifestyle. As a writer and literature student, slam poetry and storytelling are her go to jam. When not working, Trinetra is busy looking for her next place to visit or binge-watching Instagram videos for travel inspiration.


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