Maya Lin: America’s Best

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Got this sent in my way and now I pass it on to you because if nothing else you should really know who's America's Best.

The San Francisco Arts Commission’s What is Missing? Sculpture by Acclaimed Artist Maya Lin Recognized as One of America’s Best Public Artworks at the 2010 Americans for the Arts Convention in Baltimore

San Francisco’s Main Library card catalogue installation by artists Ann Chamberlain and Ann Hamilton also honored.

SAN FRANCISCO, June 30, 2010 – Luis R. Cancel, director of cultural affairs for the San Francisco Arts Commission, is pleased to announce that What is Missing? by world-renowned artist Maya Lin was selected as one of the best public artworks in the United States at the 2010 Americans for the Arts convention held in Baltimore from June 25–27. Located at the California Academy of Sciences, the sculpture is part of Lin’s last memorial and the first component of a multi-sited, multimedia artwork dedicated to raising awareness about the current crisis surrounding biodiversity and habitat loss. During the annual Public Art Year in Review session, two independent art experts, artists Helen Lessick and Fred Wilson, presented 40 of their top choices for the most innovative permanent or temporary public artworks created or debuted in 2009. What is Missing? was chosen from more than 300 entries from across the country. In addition, a 1996 installation by Ann Hamilton and Ann Chamberlain comprised of catalogue cards at San Francisco’s Main Library was selected as one of the best public art projects in the last 50 years.

“We are incredibly proud to receive this honor as it demonstrates our commitment to enriching our City by commissioning new artworks by some of the world’s most celebrated artists,” said Mr. Cancel. “Maya Lin’s last memorial, What is Missing?, is a powerful reminder of what we stand to lose should we continue to consume energy and natural resources at our current rate. At a time when the Gulf of Mexico is being ravaged by an unprecedented oil leak, her message of sustainability and habitat protection is especially critical.”

This is the 10th year that Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts, has recognized public art works. The artists and commissioning organizations involved in creating and supporting these public art works will receive letters of recognition and congratulations from Americans for the Arts. Last year, the Arts Commission’s The Language of the Birds by Brian Goggin and Dorka Keehn, located on the corner of Columbus and Broadway, received the same honor. San Francisco Arts Commission projects have consistently been selected by the Public Art Network and Americans for the Arts as among the best in the United States.

For more information about What is Missing, visit the “Press Release” section at or contact Kate Patterson at

To learn more about What is Missing? and to watch some of the videos visit