Interactive Monument for Refugees
When we commemorate we attribute meaning to a serious event from the past, in order to preserve the hope for change. We tend to say: “Never again!“. We can leave it as that, but in me the question arises: “Then what?“
My proposal consists of two parts: A place to commemorate, and a project that contributes to solidarity among the inhabitants of the city.
The memorial site offers the opportunity for individuals to commemorate in private, to lay flowers and light candles. The site is also suitable for large-scale, official commemorations. The spatial object ‘support‘ shows that we can bear the heaviest burden, if we stand together. This requires connection and solidarity. When we understand another opinion, we can learn that diversity is an enrichment of our society.
The memorial site is only complete when the city contributes its part. Secondary school students of diverse origin, are challenged to take part in ‘operation boulder‘. Together they have to organize a boulder, which they bring to the monument by manpower, as is the tradition for the inbabitants of Amersfoort (they are called ‘keientrekkers’, which means boulder tractors). The stone is the completing piece of the central monument on the site. The positive experiences the students gained during this collaboration, will be the seeds of a tolerant society in the future.
A boulder will always feel welcome in Amersfoort,
and together we create the support to carry on.
a spherical, sand-colored concrete base with a diameter of 8 meters and a height of 2.5 meters, in it lights can be integrated and there are notches where candles and flowers can be placed. the base bears a crown of 64 piles of Corten steel (2.5 meters high, 6.4 meters in diameter), in which the names of the boulder tractors can be engraved and tighten the stainless steel cables. the cables form an iris-shaped safety net on which the boulder rests.
location: Amersfoort, The Netherlands