Janet Echelman was selected to design an iconic sculpture to anchor the new LeBauer City Park in downtown Greensboro, North Carolina.
The monumental sculpture is composed of 35 miles of technical fibers crafted into 242,800 knots which gently pulse in breeze, creating an ephemeral presence in the sky above the new city park.
The commission was led by a $1-million grant from the Edward M. Armfield, Sr. Foundation, which commissioned The Community Foundation’s Public Art Endowment to manage and execute the project. They searched for an artist to give visual form to the history of Greensboro and the textile tradition of North Carolina, and selected Janet Echelman.
“I discovered that Greensboro was nicknamed the ‘Textile Capital of the World’ and ‘Gateway City’ because six railroad lines intersected there, “ said Echelman, “ so I started tracing the railway lines and marking the historic textile mills that dotted the routes. These routes brought together people from diverse cultures and races, so I wove together lines of brilliant color that meet at the center, and titled it ‘Where We Met’.”
The sculpture spans 200 feet between 60-foot-tall masts, each bearing up to 6 tons of force. Designed to withstand the accumulated effects of sun and wind over time, the sculpture is composed of fibers fifteen times stronger than steel by weight, with exceptional colorfastness and 100% resistance to UV radiation.
Materials and Size
Fiber, Buildings and Sky combined with Colored Lighting. Fibers are braided with UHMWPE (Ultra high molecular weight polyethylene)
Dimensions of net: 90 ft. length x 65 ft. width x 21 ft. depth
Installation Dimensions: 200 ft. length x 130 ft. width x ft. 58 ft. height
Art: Janet Echelman
Studio Echelman Team: Melissa Henry, Daniel Zeese, Lucca Townsend, Cameron Chateauneuf, Jamie Lee
Engineering: Arup: Clayton Binkley
Simulation Software Engineering: Autodesk
Lighting: Focus Lighting
Photography: Lynn Donovan, Joshua Spitzig
LeBauer City Park, Greensboro, NC, USA