ASU Presents Artist Janet Echelman

Appalachian State University presents a lecture titled "Reshaping Public Space" by artist Janet Echelman. Echelman will discuss her extraordinary work that intersects fine art, ancient craft, cutting-edge technology, architecture, and public art. The lecture will be held on October 29, 2014 at 6:30 pm in the Parkway Ballroom of the Plemmons Student Union. Echelman's visit to Appalachian State University is organized by the Smith Gallery and sponsored by the Department of Art, Smith Gallery, Student Development, and the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts.

American artist Janet Echelman builds soft, billowing sculpture at the scale of buildings that respond to the forces of nature — wind, water, and light. She combines ancient craft with cutting-edge technology to create ultra-lightweight sculptures that move gently with the wind in ever-changing patterns. Her art is an inviting focal point for civic life and shifts from being an object you look at, to something you can get lost in.

Echelman is an artist who defies categorization. Early in her career, every art school Echelman applied to rejected her. To date, she has received the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Harvard University Loeb Fellowship, a Fulbright Lectureship, and the Aspen Institute Henry Crown Fellowship. Her TED talk "Taking Imagination Seriously" has been translated into 34 languages with more than one million views, and she was invited back to speak on the TED main stage in 2014 for their all-star 30th anniversary conference. Ranked number one on Oprah Magazine's List of 50 Things that Make You Say Wow!, Echelman was named an Architectural Digest Innovator for "changing the very essence of urban spaces." Echelman's TED talk can be viewed at
Recent commissions include: "Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks," a 745-ft sculpture that premiered at the 2014 TED Conference; "Water Sky Garden," a commission for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics; "She Changes" on the waterfront in Porto, Portugal; and "Every Beating Second" in San Francisco Airport's new Terminal Two. Her award-winning installation spanning two city blocks in downtown Phoenix, "Her Secret is Patience," has been credited with creating a sense of place that fosters urban identity and revitalization. Her traveling exhibition, "1.26," opened at the Biennial of the Americas and traveled to Sydney, Australia, Amsterdam, Netherlands, and Singapore.

Projects currently in construction include an urban icon celebrating the textile history in Greensboro North Carolina; the remaking of Dilworth Plaza in front of Philadelphia City Hall - turning it into a garden of dry-mist; a new ionic piece for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation campus in Seattle giving visual from to their mission; an interactive sculpture/architectural installation for the Matthew Knight Arena at the University of Oregon; and a monumental sculpture for the Rose Kennedy Greenway in Boston.

The Smith Gallery is located at Appalachian State University in the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts at 733 Rivers Street, Boone, NC. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 5 PM. Admission is free. For more information, please call 828-262-7338 or visit

The Plemmons Student Union is located at 263 Locust St, Boone, NC 28068 on the campus of Appalachian State University. For more information, call 828-262-3032 or visit

Published: Oct 27, 2014 8:18am