January 8th Memorial CompetitionHonor Award - Unbuilt
Well-designed public spaces can do many things. They exhibit a community’s value on quality of life. They entertain, bring pleasure or comfort, or display the character of a place or environment. The January 8th Memorial site requires special attention to aesthetics for another reason: to enrich an emotive experience. Balancing form and function with vision, desire, and need is achieved through connecting aesthetics to place. The feeling of authenticity of the memorial, its connection to the site and to the Greater Tucson community, is a crucial test of the aesthetic impact. Understanding of the site’s individual elements, such as the way materials age in the desert air or the particular character of Tucson, is essential to the visual, tactile, and experiential beauty of the memorial. Detail-driven, innovative, functional, and visually striking, the Memorial is rooted in the physical and cultural elements valued by the community while complementing the historic character of El Presidio Park. By using: • A simple, authentic palette • Clean, bold lines • Clear, meaningful sequencing the memorial’s simplicity focuses viewers on a place and people by highlighting the individuals and stories of January 8, 2011, and the community's response in the aftermath. Visitors to a memorial often report a heightened sense of their surroundings, making sensory details critical. Attention must be paid to light, its intensity, color rendering, reflection, and control. Changes in light and shadow throughout the day enhance the experience, enrich the materials and spaces, and focus attention on the individual memorial elements. The final result uses simple, powerful design to layer thought and meaning, creating a dynamic and deeply interconnected series of spaces and forms that hint at complexity while keeping the visitors’ experience focused on the message and experience.