What drew me to want to be an artist was, I have always been interested in how the space I'm in changes the way I feel and therefore who I am at any given moment.
Janet Echelman’s colorful fiber and lighting installation examines the complex interconnections between human beings and our physical world, and reveals the artist’s fascination with the measurement of time. The volumetric form suspended from the ceiling of the Renwick Gallery’s Rubenstein Grand Salon is inspired by the data recorded March 11, 2011, following the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami that rippled across the Pacific Ocean toward Japan. The geologic event was so powerful it shifted the earth on its axis and shortened the day by 1.8 millionths of a second, lending this work its title. Echelman’s knotted meditation contrasts the forces we can understand and control with those we cannot, and the concerns of our daily existence with larger cycles of time. Dynamically-changing lighting casts projected shadow drawings in vivid colors that move from wall to wall, enticing viewers to lie down on the carpet and contemplate the work.
The work itself is a physical interrelationship through these knotted netted forms, layers upon layers. When one part moves, even one single element, every other element is affected. Together with colored light that changes and moving air currents, the work is in constant motion. It is an exploration of our interdependencies with these larger systems and cycles of time.
Museum purchase made possible by the American Art Forum.