One Life: Maya Lin

September 30, 2022 – April 16, 2023

Maya Lin working on Civil Rights Memorial, 1989. Courtesy of Adam Stoltman

National Portrait Gallery
8th and G Streets, NW
Washington, DC

2nd Floor, One Life Gallery Floor Plan

One Life: Maya Lin is the first biographical exhibition of the architect, sculptor, and environmentalist. Lin, who catapulted to global prominence in 1982 for her design of the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial, has spent more than four decades making work that centers on history and human rights with a particular focus on how we experience and relate to landscape. Lin describes her practice as “a systematic ordering of the land that is tied to history, time and language.” The exhibition traces Lin from her childhood to today, presenting a range of photographs, sculptures, personal ephemera, sketchbooks, architectural models, and images of her completed works. Also on view is an element of Lin’s project “What Is Missing?” which addresses the biodiversity crisis by inviting viewers to use a multimedia platform to share memories of natural elements that have vanished during their lifetimes.