Living rock

DEFINITION

Rock that is carved or in some other way used in situ. Often said of sculpture or architecture carved from rock that is so huge it could never have been moved anyway.Examples: Egypt, Gizeh, Old Kingdom, Great Sphinx, [another image: Pyramids and Sphinx, photo from a postcard, c.1905]. small photo of a Buddha at Bamiyan In the spring of 2000, Afghanistan's Taliban (Islamic large photo of a Buddha at Bamiyan extremists in power) destroyed colossal statues of the Buddha, carved from a living rock cliff at Bamiyan, 145 km west of Kabul, Afghanistan, long before the arrival of Islam in that area. One of the statues was 53 meters high and dated to the 5th century; the other was 37 metres tall and dated to the 3rd century. These were rare examples of statuary in the Greco-Buddhist style, priceless ancient relics of this important cultural crossroads. Several thousand monks once lived in the caves next to the statue. The Taliban's supreme leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, ordered the destruction in an edict, saying such images were contrary photo of Buddha at Bamiyan being destroyed in explosionsto Islam. "These idols have been gods of the infidels, who worshipped them, and these are respected even now and perhaps maybe turned into gods again," his edict said. Other resources on this story: 1 and 2. (See Buddhist art, Islamic art, vandalism, and xenophobia.) Gutson Borglum (American, 1867-1941), assisted by a workforce of 400, including hard-rock miners, ranchers, hobos, and unemployed laborers, Mount Rushmore National Monument, took 14 years, completed Oct. 31, 1941, dynamited and jackhammered pegmatitic granite, height of each face c. 60 feet, each nose 20 feet, width each eye 11 feet, the Black Hills in southwestern South Dakota. Cost nearly $1 million, 85% paid by the federal government. Visitors in 2000: 2,522,288. See monument. Wim Delvoye (Belgian, contemporary), four pieces: SUE, IN BAR ROUND CORNER SEE YOU THERE. A. MUM, KEYS ARE YOU KNOW WHERE DAVID, JUST POPPED OUT FOR A MOMENT, BACK IN TEN MINS. TIME TO GO. CATCH YOU LATER, A. photographs altered so that texts appear to have been carved into living rock, published in the printed and web-based art periodical TRANS> arts.cultures.media, Vol.1/2, No.3/4, 1997. This is a set of proposals for works in living rock.Also see earth art, Egyptian art, monument, reserve column, sphinx, and stone.

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