Richard Serra installs work at 441 North Rockingham, July 1970

Following his installation at the Pasadena Art Museum, Richard Serra agreed to reuse the red fir logs to create a new work at the home of Elyse and Stanley Grinstein. The Grinsteins were extraordinary collectors and patrons, whose support lies behind much of the growth of an art scene in Los Angeles in then 70s and 80s. They were partners in Gemini G.E.L., publishing multiples by many of the best-known artists of the period. They bought art, but also opened charge accounts for artists who needed help realizing projects. They served on the boards of several non-profit art spaces and museums, and were instrumental in the creation of MoCA. They also opened their Brentwood home, hosting infamous parties and offering lodging to artists in need of a welcoming roof. Serra stayed with them while installing his show in Pasadena, and he used equipment from Stanley’s company, Mifran Boman Forklift to move the huge logs into position. 

The new piece was installed on the front lawn of the house in July 1970, using a forklift and crane. One long piece was placed roughly parallel to the driveway, with 5 leaning on top of it, and another 5 laid out on the ground in front, each with a fresh cut end facing forward. The photograph shows Serra checking the distance between the raised logs. 


The logs were red fir, not redwood, and so over time succumbed to rot and insect damage, natural processes of entropic decay.

Photo courtesy of the Grinstein family