Heart Happy (cathy_edgett) wrote,
Heart Happy

Maya Lin -

I open to a page of Maya Lin's book Boundaries.

She comments on landscape, writing of how the modern age gives us new perspectives. 

I wonder why we still use war as a way to resolve conflict when we see how connected we are.  

Maya Lin:

    "I have spent much time staring out at the landscape from an airplane, looking out at the natural landscape ...

       My interest in landscape has led to works influenced and inspired by natural topographies and geologic phenomena.  I find inspiration in rock formations, ice floes, water patterns, solar eclipses, aeiral and satellite views of the earth.

       It is a distinctly twenty-first century notion of landscape that I have incorporated into my work.

       Photographic images, which can freeze and capture naturally occurring phenomena, as well as aerial photgraphs, satellite images, and microscopic and stop-camera images have given us, in this century, a new way of seeing our world.  And it is this technologically based method of analyzing or looking at the landscape that has been a significant influence on my work, both in the studio sculptures as well as the larger outdoor outworks. 

       Our view of the landscape and our relationship to it has been changed significantly by our ability to view the planet from these new vantage points.

       What is landscape art at the beginning of the twenty-first century?

       The topography where I grew up in Athens, in southeastern Ohio, was hilly and wooded.  Behind our house were three ridges separated by streams - my entire childhood was spent playing in these woods and on these hills.  I called the middle one the "lizard's back" because it started up from the creekbed, like a tail.  It grew into a long-winding ridge, and ended in what looked to us like the head of a lizard.

       That image and the presence of Indian burial mounds - the effigy mounds and the serpent mounds - were a profound influence on my work. 

       In strictly formal terms my artwork seems to vary considerably from work to work.  Waves of earth, broken car glass, water, stone, plaster.  In looking at the Wave Field or Eclipsed Time you may not make the visual connection that the same artist created both works.  My artwork has not been formed by a specific palette or materiality but instead has been shaped by the reaction I have had to each site, combined with a strong connection to an idea of landscape."

The Vietnam War Memorial is a place where people come to grieve, connect, and heal.   To use it any other way than as a place of peace seems wrong to me.  We need sacred places, both human-made and natural, to grieve and heal our anger, fear, and hate.

May you find places today, both within and without, that soothe and heal your wounds.  


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