Stacy Levy

Tide Field installation at Bartram's Garden. Photo by Steve Weinik.


As a sculptor, my interest in the natural world rests both in art and science. I work within the two fields using art as a vehicle for translating the patterns and processes of the natural world into the language of human understanding.

I try to design a project so that the site tells the ecological story of itself.

I am interested in showing the invisible aspects microorganisms and their complicated relationships of eating and being eaten, the spiraling hydrological patterns of a stream, the mosaic of growth in a vacant lot, the prevailing winds and their effects on vegetation, the flow of water through a living system. Often people think that nature ends where the city begins. But natural processes are always occurring in the city. I like to explore the idea of nature in the city and make it visible to people. I look for sites which give me the opportunity to bring the patterns and processes of the natural world into the built environment.

I work extensively with engineers, architects and landscape architects on most of my sites. For the Water Map At Friends Central School, I worked with the architects early on in the process to tie the sculpture into the architecture and the site topography and drainage. I am also familiar with working with municipalities. I have worked with both city and state organizations for the Hudson River Project. I have also worked with permitting issues and I was successful in obtaining a wetlands permit for the Schuylkill River Tide Garden project. I have worked with the Coast Guard on the Ohio River and the Army Corps of Engineers on the Schuylkill.

I frequently work with scientists who are expert in the particular aspect of nature which I am investigating. The Biology Department at Rutgers University sampled two rivers I was working with so that I had the correct aquatic micro-organisms for a project in a train station in New Jersey. I have worked with fluid dynamic engineers at Penn State University to figure out the hydrological patterns in a stream, which I then enlarged so that the vortices and laminar flows could be made apparent for a project at the North Carolina Zoological Park. I have been working with a geologist at the University of Pennsylvania on a project to develop a River Museum.

In my work, I mesh the clarity of diagrams, the beauty of natural forms and the visceral sense of the site. My art creates a comprehensible visual metaphor for an otherwise invisible natural process.

Last updated: Jun 21, 2018