Dilworth Plaza

American sculptor Janet Echelman was selected to create an iconic artwork for the redesign of Dilworth Plaza in Philadelphia’s Center City Distric.


Construction begins this summer on the renovation, which focuses on sustainability and increases in open and green space, and is expected to be completed in 2013.

Echelman’s newest work continues her interest in making visible the existing environmental forces which cannot be seen by the human eye, yet innovates with a new material and subject matter.

Functioning as a continuous X-ray of the city’s circulatory system, Echelman’s artwork will trace above ground the pathways of the three subway lines which run beneath Dilworth Plaza.

The movement will occur in real time, using a data feed of train arrival and departure. The pathways will be drawn in 5-ft-tall curtains of atomized water illuminated by layers of colored light. This is Echelman’s first artwork using this new methodology.