Public Art / Public Space

The Sculptural Environments of Barbara Grygutis

Introduction by Jack Becker

Essay by Linda Bolton, PhD



Public Art / Public Space is the first monograph about the work of Barbara Grygutis, a pioneering public artist whose large-scale sculptural environments shape the spaces they inhabit.


9.75" x 9.75"
Publication date: 
Fall 2016
Rights world: 




Public Art / Public Space chronicles the work of Barbara Grygutis, a pioneering public artist whose large-scale sculptural environments shape the spaces they inhabit. Art is a major component of our contemporary design landscape. Over the past twenty-five years, the medium of public installation has gained serious momentum, with the beautification of cities worldwide spearheaded by visceral conceptions and brazen works of art that coerce all passersby to contemplate not only the work in question or the location it is situated in, but the viewer’s relationship to the aforementioned two. This level of frequency and fervor for the medium would not be the same without the pioneering work of Barbara Grygutis, a forerunning practitioner in the field and a champion for public art’s selfless ethos in all mediums and all aspects of life. Public Art / Public Space features twenty groundbreaking works accompanied by retrospectives from public art professionals on Grygutis herself, her work, and what her extensive contributions could mean for the works of tomorrow.

About the artist:

Barbara Grygutis creates public spaces that enhance the built environment, enable civic interaction, and reveal unspoken relationships between nature and humanity. She engages the public through her works of art by identifying themes meaningful to each specific site and community.

Grygutis has been commissioned to create over 75 large-scale works of public art throughout North America and is recognized internationally for her sculptural environments. Completed projects include sculptural environments integrated into urban and natural landscapes, iconic freestanding works, sculpture gardens, public plazas, gateways, and signature markers, memorials, monuments, and works of art designed to enhance pedestrian and urban mass transportation systems.


About the author: 

 Jack Becker is the founder of the Minnesota nonprofit, Forecast Public Art, and is the publisher of the magazine Public Art Review.

I’ve learned that public art isn’t an art form; it’s a field of inquiry, like medicine or science. Artists of all stripes are experimenting and testing theories of cause and effect in the public sphere. They treat the city like it’s their laboratory, a venue for all kinds of creative experimentation. As a daily practice, public art offers unlimited opportunities for collaboration, for ideas that shape our built environment and efforts that influence change—locally and globally.

     —Jack Becker

Linda Bolton, PhD, is a professor at the University of Iowa.

To journey into the public sculptural environments of Barbara Grygutis is to awaken to an experience of joy, wonder, and beauty. These are living spaces designed to nurture the land and the soul.

     —Linda Bolton