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Maya Lin in "Identity"

Maya Lin, who at twenty-one became one of America’s most recognized artists with her winning design for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, is filmed transforming an urban park in Grand Rapids, Michigan. A work that is part art and part architecture, the park features a skating rink which Lin has outfitted with sophisticated fiber optic technology to produce an image of the starry night sky onto the surface of the ice.

“Everything I’ve done in life is about polarities, about two sides balancing out,” says the artist. Carving layers of circles out of the pages of an atlas in order to create topographic islands and canyons, both Lin’s studio and outdoor projects mark an identification with the land.

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Closed captionsAvailable in English, German, Romanian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Italian

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Maya Lin

Maya Lin catapulted into the public eye when, as a senior at Yale University, she submitted the winning design in a national competition for a Vietnam Veterans Memorial to be built in Washington, DC. She was trained as an artist and architect, and her sculptures, parks, monuments, and architectural projects are linked by her ideal of making a place for individuals within the landscape. She draws inspiration for her sculpture and architecture from culturally diverse sources, including Japanese gardens, Hopewell Indian earthen mounds, and works by American earthworks artists of the 1960s and 1970s.

“Everything I’ve done in life is about polarities, about two sides balancing out.”

Maya Lin

Maya Lin discusses her process of designing a monument for a park in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Maya Lin

3:35
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Maya Lin

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