Holt assumes the role of an intellectual conceptual artist from New York, while Smithson plays the laid back Californian driven by feelings and instinct. Their deadpan exchange ironically lays bare the limitations and contradictions of both sides in the debate.
Vanessa Place and Robert Fitterman have now pirated this film in a discussion of the bi-coastal reception of their Notes on Conceptualisms. Place takes on the role of the intellectual (although she lives in LA), and Fitterman does the airhead, laidback bit (although he lives in NYC). The interpretation stays close to the original, including the opening, in which Holt/Place checks if the camera is recording, and a friend (Kim Rosenfield in the pirated version) who butts in with questions/comments. I must say Place is a lot more convincing in the intellectual conceptual artist role than Nancy Holt.