Net installations by Janet Echelman | ITSLIQUID

Net installations by Janet Echelman

Art | March 12, 2014 |

Janet EchelmanPorto. Image courtesy of Enrique Diaz

Net installations by Janet Echelman

Janet Echelman builds living, breathing sculpture environments that respond to the forces of nature – wind, water and light – and become inviting focal points for civic life. Exploring the potential of unlikely materials, from fishing net to atomized water particles, Echelman combines ancient craft with cutting-edge technology to create her permanent sculpture at the scale of buildings. Experiential in nature, the result is sculpture that shifts from being an object you look at, to something you can get lost in.

Janet EchelmanAmsterdam. Image courtesy of Klaas Fopma

Echelman is currently embarking on her largest piece ever, a 700-foot-long sculpture that will be suspended over Vancouver next month in conjunction with the 30th anniversary of the TED Conference. Echelman’s sculpture, titled “Skies Painted with Unnumbered Sparks“, is presented with an original interactive work created in collaboration with Aaron Koblin, who Echelman met when they both spoke at TED2011.

Janet EchelmanDenver. Image courtesy of Peter van der Warker

The sculpture is an extension of the idea Echelman presented in her talk, “Taking imagination seriously.” In the talk, Echelman shares how she fell in love with a new material – fishing net – and began creating voluptuous forms that contrast with the hard edges generally found in cities. She revealed the challenge of making these sculptures both durable and permanent, but also able to react to the wind.

Janet EchelmanPhoenix. Image courtesy of Janet Echelman

She shared her dream of taking these sculptures to the next level by finding materials light enough to attach to existing buildings in a neighborhood rather than requiring a new supporting steel structure.

Janet EchelmanPhoenix. Image courtesy of Christina O’Haver

Recent prominent works include: “Her Secret is Patience” spanning two city blocks in downtown Phoenix, “Water Sky Garden” which premiered for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, “She Changes” on the waterfront in Porto, Portugal, and “Every Beating Second” in San Francisco Airport’s new Terminal Two.


Are you an artist, architect, designer? Would you like to be featured on ITSLIQUID platform? Send an e-mail to or fill the form below


Sign up for our Newsletter.

Enter your email to receive our latest updates!