The University Record, October 16, 1995

Original dance work part of dedication of
'The Wave Field'

By Sally Pobojewski
News and Information Services

Art and engineering came together outside the Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Building on North Campus last week when the College of Engineering formally dedicated "The Wave Field," an earth sculpture created by noted artist Maya Lin.

The 1,800-square-foot patch of undulating grass-covered waves was commissioned by the Association Francois-Xavier Bagnoud---a foundation established in memory of Bagnoud, who received his undergraduate degree in aerospace engineering from U-M in 1982 and was killed in a helicopter crash at age 24 in 1986.

Speaking before several hundred students, faculty and guests, Countess Albina Du Boisrouvray, Bagnoud's mother, thanked the artist for "agreeing to create this beautiful work of art."

Alon Kasha, Bagnoud's friend and roommate while both were U-M students, told the crowd how much Francois would have enjoyed studying outside nestled against one of the sculpture's supporting waves. "Francois was an engineer, but he was also an artist and a humanitarian who loved people," Kasha said.

Following the opening remarks, U-M dance students performed "Dance for `The Wave Field,'" an original work choreographed and directed by Peter Sparling, professor of dance and artistic director of Dance Gallery/Peter Sparling & Co. Jeremy Steward, a U-M alumnus and member of the Dance Gallery, was the featured dancer. The students danced across and rolled between the sculpture's waves to music composed by Daniel Roumain, musical composition doctoral candidate.

"`The Wave Field' is pure poetry," said Lin, who is best known for her creation of the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial in Washington, D.C. "It is a very gentle space that exists on a very human scale. It is a sanctuary, yet it's playful, and with the changing shadows of the sun, it is completely transformed throughout the day. `The Wave Field' expresses my desire to completely integrate a work with its site, revealing the connectedness of art to landscape, or landscape as art."