Art on High: The Greenway’s Floating Sculpture Exhibit


By now you’ve probably seen the expansive and airy work of art rising over the Rose Kennedy Greenway. Janet Echelman’s stunning installation is like nothing we’ve ever experienced — and demonstrates exactly why the Brookline native won the Smithsonian 2014 Ingenuity Award.

“As If It Were Already Here,” a floating web of earthy reds, greens and oranges, went up the first week of May with help from a team of architects, engineers, lighting experts and software developers.

“I ask what is possible,” Echelman told the Boston Globe, “And then the engineers tell me this is possible, and within that I start to design.”

The result has locals and tourists alike standing and gaping at the sky. It also makes the Greenway an even lovelier spot to have lunch or sit with a book. Every observer sees something different in the network of steel cables.

Echelman says the exhibit’s ghostly, fabric-like shapes hold empty places that stand in for parts of the area’s past landscape that are no longer present (even the pre-Big Dig highway), but still hold sway over the city.

The installation will hang through early October. You can learn more about it and Echelman’s other work at her website.

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