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Caruso St John

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Holocaust Memorial . London

Caruso St John . Holocaust Memorial . London  (3)

Caruso St John Architects . + London Holocaust Memorial

The catastrophic events of the Holocaust took place outside the UK and the mass graves, remnants of atrocity and concentration camps that are found in mainland Europe do not exist on British soil. A memorial in London will not, therefore, commemorate a particular place, but instead it can embrace a universal theme and foreground the first-hand testimony of survivors.
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Caruso St John, Marcus Taylor and Rachel Whiteread’s proposal consists of two parts – a cast, translucent sculpture above ground and a series of large chambers below ground. The sculpture brings natural light into the largest and most memorable of these spaces – the ‘Hall of Voices’ – where visitors will hear the accounts of Holocaust survivors and discover directly the network of lives, places and emotional bonds that were destroyed.
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Caruso St John Architects, Marcus Taylor and Rachel Whiteread
With Vogt Landscape Architects, Arup Lighting and David Bonnett Associates
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Adjaye

We have approached the National Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre as an opportunity to unearth the complexity of the Holocaust story, which we see as a series of layers that have become hidden by time. Our proposal aims to reveal these layers not through a static symbol commemorating the past, but through an organic living monument that evolves over time, capable of both affecting and being affected by its users.
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Our design integrates Learning Centre, Memorial and landscape into a multifaceted holistic sensorial and emotive journey. Through a careful sequencing of highly immersive spaces that intentionally juxtapose moments of solitary engagement with moments of collective gathering, our design envelops the visitor in the physical, intellectual and emotional experience of the Holocaust trauma. In so doing, we have resisted traditional notions of dictation in favour of encouraging visitors to draw personal meaning and purpose out of tragedy.
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Adjaye Associates and Ron Arad Architects
With Gustafson Porter + Bowman, Plan A and DHA Designs
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Foster

With minimum disturbance to the park, a ramp descends into the earth. Evocative of train tracks that terminated in the camps or the brown brick lined corridors leading down to the gas chambers. This is the way to the Time Left Memorial.


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Projected images of an endless procession of human figures resonate with exodus or a human text that seems to go on forever like the unspoken testimonies.

The surface of the Memorial is set in the landscape, a gently arched rusted steel plate on the cross axis of Victoria Tower, Buxton Memorial and St John’s Smith Square.

The ramp entrance is marked by a sculpture of Broken Books evoking the burning of millions of books started by the Nazis in 1933 with the words of Heinrich Heine “wherever they burn books they will in the end burn human beings”.

Marking the biggest break in the book of human history is also a reminder and a warning.
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Foster + Partners and Michal Rovner
With Simon Schama, Avner Shalev, Local Projects, Samantha Heywood, David Bonnett Associates, Tillotson Design Associates and Whybrow
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Allied Works


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We stand at a moment of transition – a time when those who lived through the Holocaust and witnessed the atrocities first-hand will no longer be present to provide testimony. Our proposal for the memorial is not an object, but the creation of a sacred space to serve the voices of survivors. It rises from the grounds of Victoria Tower Gardens, woven into the daily life of London. Folding back like a prayer shawl, it holds visitors in an embrace with the spoken word while framing a view to Parliament, underlining our shared accountability. Marked with a poet’s blessing, the Memorial and Learning Centre provide a place where all may come to hear the voice of our shared humanity and be inspired to take action against those who would deny it. It is a place to gather, listen, learn and remember – a space for Britain and the entire world.
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Allied Works
With Robert Montgomery, The Olin Studio, Ralph Appelbaum Associates, Allied Info Works, Arup, Curl la Tourelle Head Architecture, PFB Construction Management Services Ltd, BuroHappold and Nathaniel Lichfield & Partners

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