Monday, April 13, 2009

Systematic Landscaping

After my attempt to visit the California Academy of Sciences today was thwarted (once again) by impenetrable throngs of schoolchildren on Spring Break, I took my consolation in a stroll around the west end of the Academy, to enjoy artist Maya Lin's permanent installation, 'Where the Land Meets the Sea'.  Fabricated out of stainless steel wire, the suspended sculpture is a representation of the underwater topography that spans from Angel Island to the Golden Gate Bridge.

I must admit, I hadn't thought about Lin's work too much since seeing her captivating show last winter at the DeYoung.  But my ill-fated attempt to visit the Cal Academy was the perfect reminder of just how much I adore her work.  Her pieces are kinetic, yet at the same time gracefully still.   And I am blown away by how she manages to combine the mathematical and the organic, using data sets taken from the natural world as her inspiration, and creating mathematical models which are anything but dry and technical-- they seem to dance with the distilled energy of the natural forces they represent.

So I suppose not all was lost today.  I'm off to enjoy my waning weekend, so I'll leave you with a few more compelling pieces of Lin's.


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