Panel Discussion/Talk

What Is Missing? A Conversation with Maya Lin and Sean M. Decatur

Monday, April 22, 2024
6:30 – 8PM

Join Asia Society for a conversation between designer, sculptor, and environmentalist Maya Lin and American Museum of Natural History President Sean M. Decatur as they discuss Lin’s final memorial, What Is Missing?

What Is Missing? is a multi-sited memorial created by Maya Lin to raise awareness through science-based artworks about the present sixth mass extinction of species, connect this loss of species to habitat degradation and loss, and emphasize that by protecting and restoring habitat, we can both reduce carbon emissions and protect species.

In her fifth and final memorial, Maya Lin “focuses attention on species and places that have gone extinct or will most likely disappear within our lifetime if we do not act to protect them.” What Is Missing? asks us to look at a memorial not as a singular, static object, but as a work that can exist in multiple forms and places around the world.

The memorial includes permanent sound and media sculptures, traveling exhibits, temporary installations, and this website – serving as the nexus for the entire project. The “Map of Memory”, featured in the COAL + ICE exhibition, highlights ecological histories of habitats, species, waterways, and cities—with timelines, videos, historic accounts, conservation success and disaster stories, and user-submitted personal memories.

This program is part of the COAL + ICE exhibition and series of programs at Asia Society, Feb 13-Aug 11, 2024, designed to provoke thought and action on climate change. Galleries will be open until 6:30pm on April 22 and museum admission is included for holders of event tickets.