1st Edition

Memorials as Spaces of Engagement Design, Use and Meaning

By Quentin Stevens, Karen A. Franck Copyright 2016
    280 Pages
    by Routledge

    280 Pages
    by Routledge

    Memorials are more diverse in design and subject matter than ever before. No longer limited to statues of heroes placed high on pedestals, contemporary memorials engage visitors in new, often surprising ways, contributing to the liveliness of public space. In Memorials as Spaces of Engagement Quentin Stevens and Karen A. Franck explore how changes in memorial design and use have helped forge closer, richer relationships between commemorative sites and their visitors. The authors combine first hand analysis of key examples with material drawn from existing scholarship. Examples from the US, Canada, Australia and Europe include official, formally designed memorials and informal ones, those created by the public without official sanction. Memorials as Spaces of Engagement discusses important issues for the design, management and planning of memorials and public space in general.

    The book is organized around three topics: how the physical design of memorial objects and spaces has evolved since the 19th century; how people experience and understand memorials through the activities of commemorating, occupying and interpreting; and the issues memorials raise for management and planning.

    Memorials as Spaces of Engagement will be of interest to architects, landscape architects and artists; historians of art, architecture and culture; urban sociologists and geographers; planners, policymakers and memorial sponsors; and all those concerned with the design and use of public space.

    1. Introduction Part I: Memorials as Objects and Spaces 2. From Viewing to Engaging 3: From Straightforward To Challenging 4. From General To Particular Part II: Memorials as Used and Understood 5. Commemorating 6. Occupying 7. Interpreting Part III: Memorials As Responsibilities 8. Managing 9. Planning 10. A Special Kind Of Public Space


    Quentin Stevens is Associate Professor of Urban Design at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia, and previously worked at the Bartlett School of Planning, University College London, UK. He is author of The Ludic City and co-editor of Loose Space, The Uses of Art in Public Space and Transforming Urban Waterfronts.

    Karen A. Franck is Professor in the College of Architecture and Design at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA. Memorials as Spaces of Engagement addresses two topics she has explored previously: uses of public space in Loose Space and intentions and consequences of design decisions in Design through Dialogue and Architecture from the Inside Out.

    "Having long believed that 'what happens' in a memorial is the exchange between visitors and the spaces they inhabit, I find this work to be as enthralling as it is insightful. It is the first full-length, in-depth examination of the memorial’s evolution, a brilliant compendium of late-modern memorials and an authoritative analysis of how they work." - James E. Young, Distinguished University Professor, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Author of The Texture of Memory and At Memory’s Edge

    "Memorials as Spaces of Engagement highlights the embodied experiences and creative practices of contemporary memorials. The rich and well-illustrated historical and current-day examples, along with the focus on memorial use, design and responsibility, makes Stevens and Franck’s volume a welcome addition to discussions about urban public space in heritage and urban studies. " - Karen E. Till, Senior Lecturer of Cultural Geography, Maynooth University, Ireland

    "Stevens and Franck elegantly situate the complexity of memorials in a clear typology, offering a close-up look at the interrelationships among spatial strategies, cultural meanings, and management practices. Memorials as Spaces of Engagement shows these public places in their full intricacy, revealing charged territories that afford multiple and often contradictory opportunities for contemplation, contestation and play." - Lawrence J. Vale, MIT, Author, Architecture, Power, and National Identity