The engineering that went into the landmark sculpture at the new Downtown Civic Space Park will be featured at a forum at 6 p.m. Friday, June 5 at Burton Barr Central Library, 1221 N. Central Ave.
The free event will include presentations by the engineers who designed the sculpture’s unique steel and net structure. A union of art and engineering, the sculpture’s steel supports in 2008 received the Excellence in Structural Engineering Award from the Arizona Structural Engineers Association. The award preceded the sculpture’s installation in March.
Artist Janet Echelman designed the piece, titled “Her secret is patience,” to move in the wind and capture changing desert light. The kinetic sculpture is made from specially designed flexible netting suspended 38 feet above the ground on a framework of steel rings, cables and poles. The piece rises to an overall height of about 100 feet and spans 100 feet at the top. Specialized lighting gives the work an extraordinary glowing presence at night.
The upcoming forum will answer questions about how the sculpture was designed, what natural forces had to be considered in creating and engineering the artwork and what problems were overcome to design, build and install it.
The forum will include presentations by Kyle Peyton, who led the CAID Industries team that engineered and fabricated the sculpture, and Allan Ortega of M-3 Engineering, which designed the artwork’s award-winning steel and cable supports. Ian Keough of Buro Happold, which developed the netting’s complex architecture, will discuss the natural forces of gravity and wind that the net’s distinctive geometry of mesh and knotting were designed to withstand and the digital modeling that was created to produce the artwork.
The event is open to the public but RSVP’s are requested. Call 602-495-0185 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The discussion is sponsored by the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture Public Art Program. For more information about the public art program, visit phoenix.gov/arts or call 602-262-4637 or 602-534-5500.