Tyler Green
Art-focused Journalism by Tyler Green

Tyler Green Modern Art Notes

Dia threatens Utah’s Epic over Spiral Jetty IPA

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Last spring, ready for the beer at the end of a long week, I saluted the Spiral Jetty India Pale Ale from Salt Lake City’s Epic Brewing Co. I’ve never tried Epic’s Spiral Jetty IPA — I do love me some big, booming IPAs such as Victory HopDevil, but alas, I’ve never seen Epic’s beers in these parts — but if it’s half as good as that picture of Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty and a boater, it’s probably pretty terrific. (The reviews are mixed: The crew at BeerAdvocate is so-so on the the brew, while RateBeer readers dig it.)

It would seem as if the folks at the Dia Art Foundation aren’t too interested in how Spiral Jetty IPA tastes. According to Glen Warchol in this morning’s Salt Lake Tribune, Dia is putting heat on Epic, claiming it’s using Smithson’s artwork improperly. Epic argues that because the work is between state and federal land that photographs of it for labels such as Epic’s are OK. Don’t miss the story: Both sides seem to have a case.

But if you’re Dia and you need Utahans and their government to embrace Spiral Jetty in order to ensure its long-term health and preservation (one more), newspaper headlines such as “N.Y. arts group has epic problem with Utah brewery” aren’t good for you. Dia and the Smithson estate should find a friendly, neighborly way to embrace Epic’s fondness for the Jetty.

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