This memorial intends to address loss as both an individual experience and as a collective reality. To accomplish this, one hundred eighty four individual memorials totaling the number of victims of the attack will be dispersed throughout the world and one collective memorial will remain on the Pentagon site.
Recognizing that “loss is inseparable from what remains and that what is lost is known only by what remains of it,” the collective memorial stands in contrast to the seamless renovation of the Pentagon in which the physical void created by the attack was filled within a year’s time. Given that each void in the collective memorial stands in place of an absent individual memorial, a visitor is left with the indelible impression that the events of 9/11 reach far beyond the Pentagon site. It is important that the collective memorial left on the site is incomplete and cannot be put back together by any intuitive process.
Physically the individual memorials represent the positive form of a subtraction from the collective memorial. They link together in complex ways, sharing volume as they overlap, making specific niches in the wall. The subtractive interaction between them results in unique forms representative of the victim’s individuality and of the inevitable convergence of personal loss experienced by the victim’s friends and families. Each victim’s family will receive a unique piece and each will have a different way of expressing the memory of their loved one. Some of the memorials will find a home within the intimate setting of a garden or yard while others will be located in more public contexts like town squares and urban centers. They can be inscribed with the family name, a favorite quote, or a meaningful image. They may be left anonymously in a field, by the shore, or in the woods. We cannot be prescriptive, but only inspired and taught by the many different ways that these memorials will be interpreted.
This memorial intends to address loss as both an individual experience and as a collective reality. To accomplish this, one hundred eighty four individual memorials totalling the number of victims of the attack will be dispersed throughout the world and one collective memorial will remain on the Pentagon site.