WTC Memorial Finalists

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Look here for the animation page of the design I think it most appropriate / touching. From there you can also link to the other ones.



I think this design is so cool. You can visually appreciate the magnitude of the towers and where they once stood, and at the same time get a sense of peace and closure (and rebirth of something new in this same place). The idea of standing under the waterfall from the inside, reading the names etched in glass (I believe) as the water falls behind it... never being able to access the inside... is just so cool IMO.



I hope this one wins, even though the others certainly have their merit.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 17
    zozo Posts: 3,115member
    http://www.wtcsitememorial.org/fin0.html



    i think thats the most impressive



    Too bad the buildings are so damn horrible...
  • Reply 2 of 17
    There are some nice ideas there but Moogs i think yours is better, etch the names on the glass. From my reading of the animation on CGI the names are on the 'ribbon' around the glass, which means you can sit on them, not very memorial like. Some of the other schemes are too pretentious for my delicate stomach, the garden of lights in particular.

    Ha! the exact opposite opinion of ZO! Oh well. c'est la vie.
  • Reply 3 of 17
    moogsmoogs Posts: 4,296member
    I think you are correct, Alex. For some reason my mind didn't catch the ribbon thing and I immediately envisioned names on the glass. Maybe we should write to the designer and suggest the glass etching idea. They might like it too.



  • Reply 4 of 17
    Moogs that'a another good idea,( you're on a roll ) although i can't find any links to him from that site to pass on your etching one.. If you check out his original submission the ribbon isn't there, just wall to ceiling glass and waterfall . Much better in MHO, with lots of scope for etching those poor peoples' names.
  • Reply 5 of 17
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    Names on glass is so 1980s, repeated over and over. Can't we do something different?
  • Reply 6 of 17
    eugeneeugene Posts: 8,254member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by ZO

    http://www.wtcsitememorial.org/fin0.html



    i think thats the most impressive




    Check.



    The others are pretty generic, really.
  • Reply 7 of 17
    "Reflecting Absence" . . . Pssh. The dude uses Lightwave. . . you can tell by the poor shading.



    Minor League.
  • Reply 8 of 17
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Moogs

    Look here for the animation page of the design I think it most appropriate / touching. From there you can also link to the other ones.



    I think this design is so cool. You can visually appreciate the magnitude of the towers and where they once stood, and at the same time get a sense of peace and closure (and rebirth of something new in this same place). The idea of standing under the waterfall from the inside, reading the names etched in glass (I believe) as the water falls behind it... never being able to access the inside... is just so cool IMO.



    I hope this one wins, even though the others certainly have their merit.




    I don't like it....and its mostly due to the presentation. poor rendering and rather than make me respect the memorial it creeped me out.
  • Reply 9 of 17
    The dBox renderings are the best ones just in terms of the technical merit of the images, ideas notwithstanding.



    One of the finalists is a friend of mine, so I'm totally biased right now. I'm really excited for him.



    Votives in Suspension is pretty straightforward. Highlights the tower footprints (frankly, I don't think they were ever a big deal to me), and like many other submissions, takes you underground, but not to the more cavernous environment of the other schemes.



    Lower waters didn't excite me a whole lot for whatever reason. I went through it last, and I guess I saw elements of it in other schemes.



    I like the memorial cloud form, whatever it actually is, though I suppose it's less specifically about the individual markers for the victims. That might be a good thing though. IMO, the least conventional of the schemes.



    Suspending Memory is what I'm pulling for just because of the bias factor I mentioned before. It's actually rather traditional, like a urban Victorian cemetary, which is surprising considering the source. It's also very specific about certain elements. Those individual pieces seem to be the main focus of the team's attention, with the footprints and foundations being somewhat secondary to the idea, the vehicle for simply placing the individual moves. That's more apparent in the animation, some of the later model photos, and certainly in the original submission, with almost everything being measured against a human body. To me, it's the most succinct in terms of telling the individual stories, but the uniformity of the park's glass columns (the Danteum?) and landscape actually helps it pull together more than other schemes without feeling like a serial composition. It's not so much a "big move" submission despite the huge water feature, more a lot of little stories, much more intimately scaled judging by the renderings and animation. It boils down to being a park, more than a mausoleum. I think it has the most potential of being a fixture in the everyday life of New York for that reason. It avoids the under-programmed or under-utilized site by simply converting it into a manmade pond. The pool may be a good reflecting pool if the towers around it turn out well enough. (I fear the developer doing just what developers do to those surrounding buildings.) It does handle its contextual moments well though, namely where the site meets the street and the access to the place. I think I much prefer a poignant "trickle" from the "wall of tears" around the site to the more blunt, gushing water elements in other schemes.



    Garden of Light[s] is at once the most, what, expected submission but it also serves that expectation very well. It's almost cliché. The thing is driven by the mechanism of light angles, much like the Wedge of Light from the Libeskind master plan. The concept sort of lacks some "deeper" meanings though, sort of one-dimensional. I'm afraid the above ground areas are sort of under-programmed and the actual memorial too remote.



    Reflecting Absence is the other "expected" scheme. I was toying with this well of water concept a bit, and water is sort of an "easy" answer in that it's often quite satisfying to these problems. Very Tadao Ando. Lots of concrete and slots of light. The actual waterfall courts below feel like a monastary or convent court from the Renaissance. Intimate, if too dark. The top at street level seems less thoughtful, there's a park waiting to be born in that area, most of the site being built back up to street level really.



    Dual Memory seems a bit fragmented (aside from its two main memorial elements), which is sort of a relief compared to many other schemes (one-liners are notoriously good for winning competitions). I like that it plays with the levels in section, but I think the connection between the two memorials could be stronger. The third image in the slide show of the "Center of Individual Memory Footprint" reminds me of some 1930's Italian architecture that I like a lot. The space with all the pictures feels too "temporary" somehow. Like it's a traveling exhibit. I can't put my finger on it.



    Inversion of Light is a lot like Reflecting Absence but somehow more satisfying to me. More delicate? precious? empty? I think they just captured the light and sound better in their final presentation. It's also a hell of a lot like the Vietnam Vets Memorial (with a splash of the MLK monument). I wonder what Maya Lin thinks of it? It's also under-programmed at ground level but I should stop pointing that out by now.



    PS: I think the ribbon thing in the one scheme is for the rescuers and service people who died, other names are etched in the glass.



    PPS: The whole monument business (none of these are technically memorials except maybe the "picture gallery" in the Dual Memory submission) is sort of formulaic at this point: you have your One Thing monument, and you have your Menagerie monument. Some like the Vietnam memorial (only a memorial because of the forgettable statue nearby) manage to strike a good balance. I found it really hard to think outside these two categories, which was really frustrating.



    PPPS: I think the whole who made the best rendering is sort of a red herring. Yes, it matters to sway the jurors and public, but it's not TV to be observed, you should be probing, looking into these things to get at their real intentions, try to see how they would really look and feel, where they cheat and "fudge' stuff, where they haven't looked yet, what the y missed, where it can still go. Great architecture is layered with meanings and kinds of beauty. The more you look, the more it rewards your curiosity.
  • Reply 10 of 17
    moogsmoogs Posts: 4,296member
    I think some of you guys are looking at it from a slightly different perspective than I was. I wasn't really concerned with how good the 3D animation was, so much as tried to visualize what the actual designs would look and feel like.



    Scott: there are lot's of 80's memorial monuments with names carved in glass?
  • Reply 11 of 17
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Moogs

    I think some of you guys are looking at it from a slightly different perspective than I was. I wasn't really concerned with how good the 3D animation was, so much as tried to visualize what the actual designs would look and feel like.



    Scott: there are lot's of 80's memorial monuments with names carved in glass?




    Well, I think they all are weak, so I'm taking the time to make sure mac users get it in their heads that FormZ and EI are a one-two punch. Good products, good support.



    I really wanted a new building there. make the whole building into a memorial if your want, but effective commerce is what separates this country from the ones across the pond, and I think we should glorify that.
  • Reply 12 of 17
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    I think it was too big a site for too little program. Most schemes lack intimacy and human scale, their purpose and impact diffused across the site.



    We dealt with the big hole in the ground problem for a competition about a year ago, and while I like the concept of Libeskind's exposed foundations, it's a very difficult urban problem to solve without it feeling like, well, a big hole in the ground.



    Actually, I think the first phase boards were the strongest presentations in terms of presenting their ideas strongly. I'd look at the second phase images as diagrams despite their photo-realistic portrayals. I think that's affecting a lot of people's impressions. Some abstraction in a lot of those cases would probably work better actually, even for the public. The only one that seems more compelling with its photo-real animation is the Suspended Memory submission. The other animations seems kind of wasted IMO. Seeing people actually occupying/interacting with that scheme actually adds a lot to that design.



    Most of the schemes also use a sort of "tour-guide" linear idea of sequence, or sometimes none at all, just objects (solids or voids) in the frame. The more woven individual sequences the Suspended Memory one suggests in the animation is more compelling for that reason, potentially more of a ballet of visitors' and mourners' lives (and the lives of the trees)as much as a monument to the dead. If those other submissions protrayed how they were occupied more, they might be more compelling.
  • Reply 13 of 17
    buonrotto, always the analyst. i have the same bias as you well know.
  • Reply 14 of 17
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    Analysis? with significantly less rigour. Mere praxis has made me soft and lumpy.



    No thoughts to contribute? It's not like anyone will notice nor does it matter what you say here.
  • Reply 15 of 17
    buonrottobuonrotto Posts: 6,368member
    Pardon the rude *bump* but is this it? Did I kill a thread or does no one else have an opinion? \
  • Reply 16 of 17
    Reflecting Absence. Keep it subtle. All the others are too intellectual, overbearing, ethereal and just plain overstating the obvious (images of the victim's faces?). I hope that this one is considered. But I thought that the other building designs they chose were outrageous. All I got. 8)
  • Reply 17 of 17
    amorphamorph Posts: 7,112member
    I generally like the idea of subtle, but this is a large space. Each footprint is about an acre. The memorial has to be, among other things, a civic space, and I the huge swaths of nothing in some of these designs (especially Reflecting Absense, IMO) are a little too close to being a cross between a ruin and a crypt. Those have their place in the design (because part of the design is a crypt for the unidentified remains) but IMO ground level isn't that place. If the designer wants a void, the site already provides a huge one.



    Psychologically, the goal of bringing the towers down was to demoralize and terrify us. Thus, the memorials that are more centered on strength and hope and community seemed more appropriate to me. You only wear black for so long.



    Practically, I like the designs with trees and benches and paths simply because they're more human. (I basically ignored all the symbolism and allegory, since most of that is cheap contest fodder.) I don't have an outstanding favorite, but:



    The Garden of Lights lays the symbolism on a bit thick, but it also has the most celebratory and life-affirming touch (the orchard), a very personal memorial (the roses) and a haunting and powerful crypt (the altars), appropriately underground and silent and available to those who want to go there. Everything is on an appropriately human scale.



    Suspending Memory has tree-filled memorial sites, which are respectful and contemplative without being stark or empty. The human size of the design is uplifting. The garden wall with stones jutting out is both suitably monolithic for a memorial and not nearly as bleak as the acres of smooth stone in other designs. The contemplative areas offered are a bit weak, though: The illustration offered seemed at once too exposed and too heavy-browed. It didn't define enough of a space. The designers neatly invert the problem of what to do with the large and difficult space by making the footprints the public area and make the rest a pond. Water is calming and beautiful and peaceful, so this works well.



    Inversion of Light gets points for its backlit reflection pool and the for transcending the crypt for the unidentified, but it suffers the general problem of offering the visitor vast swaths of nothing (curvilinear nothing is a small consolation).
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