Her Secret is Patience


…and she’s already speaking to us.  The groundbreaking art sculpture at Taylor and Central is not quite ready.  Crews began installing the flexible netting on March 9th, but some of it wasn’t fitting correctly and had to be reordered.  The buzz is she should be back on track in a week or two.


Here is a rendering of what Her Secret is Patience will look like once completed.  Artist Janet Echelman envisioned the sculpture to reflect Arizona’s monsoon clouds and our state flower, the Cactus Blossom.  The structure was known as Skybloom until Echelman decided on Her Secret is Patience from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s quote, “Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience.”

Whether you love it, hate it, curiously watch the construction progress (check out ASU’s live webcam: http://copp.asu.edu/do/from-the-dean/civic-space), once mistakenly thought it was some sort of radio tower or part of a building, or if you’ve decided it cost too much – it doesn’t matter.  The beauty is in our discussion.  This will be a landmark part of our city – an addition to a Downtown we’re all passionate about.  Commenting on the controversy, Echelman told Newsweek in December ’07, “It’s good for art to make us think, to give us a shared experience that creates dialogue, makes us talk to each other, including strangers.”

While I was looking over the fence at the piece on Wednesday, a stranger walked up and asked what I thought about it.  I took a breath and smiled, wondering where to begin.  Before I could speak, she said, “I don’t know about it yet.”  Then she walked on.  If she would’ve stayed a minute longer, she would’ve been given an earful.  I don’t mind sounding like an over-enthused cheerleader when I say, “I’m excited about it!” I’m excited for the netting to get here and hang and billow.  I can’t wait until the lighting is installed, making for a completely different experience at night. I can’t wait to see what happens when the monsoon winds kick up! I love that the piece is distinctive. I love that it’s huge! I love that you can see it from blocks away and look over it from Downtown office windows.  I love that Her Secret is Patience will be a defining visual of Downtown Phoenix, and that in many ways, she might define Downtown Phoenix.  -but for now, I will take another breath and wait…


-written March 13, 2009 by Kyla Turner, Membership and Communication Commitee Chairperson

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One thought on “Her Secret is Patience

  1. We’ve also learned about patience waiting for everything downtown. A perfect fit!

    Thanks for the link to the camera! I love that we are developing art for the downtown area and can’t wait to see it at night.

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