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LACMA's big rock finishes first day of slow, 106-mile journey

February 29, 2012 |  8:26 am

 LACMA's big rock finished the first day of its 11-day, 106-mile tour early Wednesday, beginning its nightly creep from Riverside to the county art museum on Wilshire Boulevard.

The rock, which started moving Tuesday night from the Stone Valley quarry in Riverside, arrived at its first stop, the intersection of Mission Boulevard and Bellegrave Avenue in Ontario at 5 a.m.

The boulder rested in a sling on its massive transporter, and was shrink-wrapped in milky white plastic and glowing under 300-some string lights.

The move, handled by Emmert International, is nearly half a year behind schedule -- largely due to permitting delays as it travels through 22 cities and four counties.

Mark Albrecht, the project manager for the move, said the boulder's 200-foot-long transporter and its unwieldy caravan of more than 20 additional support vehicles, only traveled five miles on its first night.

"We want to limit our travel tonight," he said. "We don't want to bite off more than we can chew."

The rock will eventually land at the Los Angeles County Museum of art in the Mid-Wilshire district, where it will be the focal point of artist Michael Heizer's sculpture "Levitated Mass."


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-- Deborah Vankin, traveling with the big rock