Maya Lin (Athens, Ohio, USA, 1959) studied art and architecture at Yale University. Her first project was the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington D.C. (1981-1982), which she produced when she was barely twenty-two years old. At that time she set up her studio in New York, from which she has carried out numerous architectural, landscaping and public-space projects. Lin is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as the American Academy of the Arts and Sciences. She received the USA’s National Medal of Arts in 2009 and is included in the National Women’s Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, New York.
Her work has also been exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide, with solo shows such as Il Cortile Mare (1998) at the American Academy in Rome or those celebrated at the De Young Museum in San Francisco, the Corcoran Art Gallery in Washington D.C., the Heinz Architectural Center in Pittsburgh, the Wanås Foundation in Sweden, or the David Brower Center in Berkeley to name a few.
Among her most recent work is A Fold in the Field, 2013, her largest work to date, in which she covered three hectares of land at the Alan Gibbs sculpture park in Auckland, New Zealand. In this project she rolled out an 11 acre field in New Zealand, creating a fantastic landscape of folded earthen waves that rise 20 meters above to create an abstracted wave form. Four years before she produced the twenty-six- metre-long Silver River in Las Vegas in which she recreated the course of the Colorado River with over 1,600 kilos of recycled silver, focusing attention on the critical role water plays in this desert landscape.
Lin is currently working on the Confluence Project, an installation on the Columbia River, on the West Coast of the United States, which links Lewis and Clark’s expedition with the history of the Native American people that lived in that region. Another current endeavour is What is Missing?, a global multimedia project that she describes as her final memorial monument and which deals with the environmental crisis and how it impacts biodiversity and the deterioration of natural habitats.