Breaking a Sweat with Landmarks

Abby Drake

In May, Landmarks partnered with the Fitness Institute of Texas for a movement-infused tour of the collection. Landmarks’ education intern, Abby Drake, reflects on the tour and recounts the innovative ways the collection inspired physical activity and movement. Read the full list of excercises and artworks in the blog below.

A group of people exercise in front of Mark di Suvero's "Clock Knot"

Our fitness tour began at Mark di Suvero’s Clock Knot. To kick things off, we tried to mimic the straight steel beams of the sculpture. From our perspective, it looked like someone stretching, as if the work was reaching upwards, side-to-side, and downwards, as if it too was warming up for the tour. 

Abby Drake, Landmarks Education Intern, takes a selfie in Sarah Oppenheimer's "C-010106"

We then moved on to Sarah Oppenheimer’s C-010106, where we did a series of planks and glute exercises to replicate the bridge on which the work is sited. The two glass structures cut seamlessly through the surface of the bridge, giving the appearance that the work “floats.” It was interesting to see the visual array of reflections the work produced.

At Nancy Rubin’s Monochrome for Austin we practiced our balance by doing leg lifts that mimicked the sculpture. The work is composed of 70 canoes, a “bouquet of boats,” that are suspended in the air and cantilever over Speedway. I was surprised to learn that the work is assembled together with only tension wires and that its foundation goes more than forty feet into the ground to support the weight! (It think it does a better job of balancing than I.)

A group of people do wall sits in Sol LeWitt's "Circle with Towers"

Our fourth stop was at Sol LeWitt’s Circle with Towers, a large geometric structure built of concrete cinderblocks. This sculpture is the only work from Landmarks’ collection that people are encouraged to touch and that inspired our exercise – lovingly termed “Sol LeWitt Wall Sits.”

Making our way down Speedway, we finished up at Donald Lipski’s The West. As an optional way to round out the tour, we could choose to either run or walk the half mile back to Clock Knot. After we calculated it, the total tour was a mile long – not too bad for an early morning work out!

Special thanks to Rachel Watson from the Fitness Institute of Texas for leading our tour with education coordinator, Catherine Whited.