Greater Reston Arts CenterThe Greater Reston Arts Center (GRACE) hosts a unique evening of dance that echoes the spiral construction of the GRACE gallery and that resonates with the exhibition, Divining Nature: an Elemental Garden tonight in Reston Town Center. Artist Rebecca Kamen, soundscape composer Susan Alexjander and choreographer Jane Franklin‘s dynamic alliance investigates the elemental world in correlation to human connection. Named 2008’s Best Dance Company by the Washington City Paper, Jane Franklin Dance has earned recognition by promoting active participation in dance by people of all ages and by performing unique collaborations in unusual locations.

GreaterRestonArtsCenter is pleased to present Rebecca Kamen’s Divining Nature: An Elemental Garden, a sculpture installation inspired by the periodic table of chemical elements. Kamen transforms the arts center’s octagonal gallery into a spiral garden of luminous, white “flowers” representing the eighty-three naturally occurring elements. Each flower is comprised of white Mylar tiers supported on slender fiberglass stems. The number of tiers or petals corresponds to the element’s orbital pattern while the number of stems is based on its electrons.  More images.

Beginning with the simplest elements attached to a column like vines clinging to a garden wall, the flowers rotate out and flow around the gallery floor in a mathematical pattern based on a Fibonacci spiral. As the flowers move farther away from the center they grow larger and more complex, illuminating both the beauty and meaning of the periodic table. An experienced collaborator, Kamen joined forces with architect Alick Dearie to assist with the installation drawings and composer Susan Alexjander who developed the shimmering soundscape.

While Kamen’s garden of elements transforms the arts center’s main gallery into a floating sea of pagoda-like forms, in an adjacent space the artist uses the geometric forms of the Platonic Solids to create wall-mounted sculptures inspired by the five original elements: Earth, Fire, Water, Air, and Cosmos.

Kamen’s unique process based on wide ranging research into science, cosmology, spirituality, and philosophy yields sculptures that begin with complex concepts and transform into distilled objects of refined beauty.

More Information:

  Music of Susan Alexjander
  The American Chemical Society loves the show!
  See the Blog of the Philadelphia Area Center for History of Science
  See the Observer News review too.
  Northern Virginia Art Beat says, “They’re playful exercises”

This project is funded in part by the Arts Council of Fairfax County, supported by Fairfax County.
GRACE programs are also supported in part by the Reston Community Center, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Generous support provided by Helen and Ronald Dunn

Established in 1990, beautiful Reston Town Center is an acclaimed outdoor venue offering more than 50 retail shops, 30 restaurants and a 13-screen cinema, plus more to come.  At the Center’s hub, the Pavilion hosts special events, concerts, festivals throughout the year and ice-skating in winter. For more information on shopping, dining and events at Reston Town Center, visit, and find it on
Facebook and follow on TwitterAddress: 11900 Market Street, Reston, VA 20190 Directions: From I-495, take I-66 west to the Dulles Toll Road (Exit 12, Route 267 West) to Reston Parkway (Exit 12). Turn right on Reston Parkway then left on New Dominion Parkway (4thlight).

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