Iconic artist, designer, and environmentalist Maya Lin was announced as the recipient of the 21st Annual Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize. The Gish Prize is regarded as one of the most prestigious honors bestowed to U.S. artists and has one of the largest cash awards, with this year's prize valued at US$300,000. The Gish Prize selected Lin out of nearly 100 nominees in all artistic fields, and were nominated by members of the arts community.
Established in 1994 through the will of legendary actress Lillian Gish, the award recognizes highly accomplished artists who have pushed the boundaries of their respective art forms, contributed to social change, and are seen as a lasting inspiration for the next generation.
Maya Lin will be presented with the Gish Prize on November 12 during a private event at The Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Speakers at the evening event will include Michael R. Bloomberg, architecture critic Paul Goldberger, and Lisa Phillips, the Toby Devan Lewis Director of The New Museum.
Read more about Maya Lin below.
"In her remarkable career, Maya Lin has created a powerful and highly influential body of work within both art and architecture that includes large-scale site-specific installations, intimate studio artworks, architectural works and memorials. In her large-scale environmental artworks such as the recent A Fold in the Field (2013), Storm King Wavefield (2009) and the epoch-making Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial, she has consistently explored how we experience and relate to the landscape, setting up a systematic ordering of the land that is tied to history, time and language.
Her studio artworks, which have been shown in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States and abroad (most recently at the Pace Gallery in London and New York and at the Parrish Art Museum), often build upon advanced technological methods of visualizing geographic features to inspire a deeper relationship between the viewer and the natural world. Her architectural projects, which are often undertaken at the request of non-profit institutions, include the recently completed Museum for Chinese in America in New York City and the Riggio-Lynch Interfaith Chapel and Langston Hughes Library for the Children’s Defense Fund in Clinton, Tennessee.
A committed environmentalist, Maya Lin is now working on what she anticipates will be her final redefinition of the memorial, What Is Missing?, which focuses on the current crisis of biodiversity and directs attention not toward the past but the future, and the potential for saving species and habitats. An ongoing multi-site work, What Is Missing? exists in select scientific institutions, as a website and as a book. It debuted in its first iteration at the California Academy of Sciences in 2009 with a sound and media sculpture installation.
Maya Lin now joins a roster of honorees that includes Frank Gehry, Bob Dylan, Arthur Miller, Shirin Neshat, Ornette Coleman, Trisha Brown, Anna Deavere Smith and Spike Lee."
The Gish Prize selection committee for 2014 featured: committee chair David Henry Hwang, playwright, librettist and screenwriter; Ella Baff, executive and artistic director of Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival; Fairfax Dorn, executive director of Ballroom Marfa; Clive Gillinson, executive and artistic director of Carnegie Hall; and Carrie Mae Weems, visual artist.
Learn more about the Gish Prize here.
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