New Museum Names Maya Lin 2012 Visionary Celebrated Artist

Maya Lin (Courtesy Patrick McMullan)

Maya Lin, the artist and architect best known for her design of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C., will be this year’s Visionary speaker at the New Museum.

Ms. Lin is the fourth person to be honored by the New Museum in its Visionaries series, which was inaugurated in 2009 to honor “international thinkers in the fields of art, architecture, design and related disciplines of contemporary culture.”

At a talk on May 30 at the New Museum Theater, Ms. Lin will speak about her most recent project, a work-in-progress called What Is Missing, which looks at a memorial as a multi-site work that can take on multiple forms simultaneously, rather than a static object. Ms. Lin established a foundation for the project that creates science-based artworks that explore the idea of mass extinction. One such work is Unchopping a Tree, a 2009 video about deforestation. It shows a montage, set to a soundtrack by Brian Eno, of beloved landmarks along with text indicating how long it would take for them to be destroyed. For example: “Central Park, New York City, USA: Destroyed in 9 minutes.”