Memorials of the Future Finalists announced

Finalist | Climate Chronograph

The four finalist teams of the Memorials of the Future design competition have been selected. The finalists will move to the next stage that includes working with competition partners to develop site-specific for the memorials in Washinton, D.C., USA. The teams’ proposals are expected to “advance a framework for the design of 21st-century memorials and provide future memorial sponsors with fresh approaches to commemorating their subject manner”

The National Park Service (NPS), the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC), and Van Alen Institute are collaborating on Memorials for the Future, an ideas competition to reimagine how we think about, feel, and experience memorials.

The finalists include a landscape intervention, immersive installation, elemental experience, sound installation.


Climate Chronograph

Team: Azimuth Land Craft
Members: Erik Jensen, Rebecca Sunter
A platform for witnessing rising seas, the Climate Chronograph is a living observatory for an unfolding global story. As seas rise, cherry trees die in place, becoming bare branched delineations of shorelines past. Over a lifetime, a visitor will experience the same place in its ever-changing condition, a legible demonstration of generational-paced change. This new memorial is continually becoming, and in doing so offers a new approach to monumentality. A light human hand-sustainably initiates a profound pastoral meditation. This landscape chronograph marks both our vulnerability and our response. It records the challenges before us.

American Wild


Team: DHLS
Members: Forbes Lipschitz, Halina Steiner, Shelby Doyle, Justine Holzman
American Wild virtualizes the National Parks through an interactive, immersive installation. Using ultra-high-definition video, recordings of each 59 natural parks can be projection-mapped at full scale. Audio recordings heighten the visceral experience and establish emotional connections to the landscape. The memorial democratizes National Park access by creating an installation in one of the most economically and racially diverse neighborhoods in the nation’s capital. Full scale, immersive environment design expands access to both phenomenological experience and ecological understanding. In so doing, the memorial reinvigorates the ways in which we interact with the cultural and biological diversity of the American landscape.

The IM(MIGRANT) : Honoring the Journey


Team: Honoring the Journey
Members: Radhika Mohan, Sahar Coston-Hardy, Janelle L. Johnson, Michelle Lin-Luse
The experience of movement and migration is the elemental experience of what it means to be an American. Leaving home, hopeful and expectant, and meeting hostility and kindness, misunderstanding and acceptance. Overcoming obstacles fueled by ambition and resourcefulness. Making a new home among people familiar and strange. Immigrant experiences, including those of native peoples, are at the foundation of the national psyche. They are also experiences that divide our country and have been a part of our political debate since the country’s founding. THE IM(MIGRANT) is a proposal that responds to these ideas, reinforcing core American beliefs by unfolding and commemorating the varied journeys that grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles, friends, and strangers have taken through the landscape of Washington, DC. It offers the visitor access to the experience of movement, of arrival, and of making a new home.



Team: Talk Talk
Members: Anca Trandafirescu, Troy Hillman, Yurong Wu, Amy Catania Kulper
VOICEOVER: histories, memories, and flights of fancy VOICEOVER is a project that embraces a spirit of revisionism as a means toward a broader and more democratic form of national memorialization. Rather than a freestanding monument, VOICEOVER is a supplemental overlay that expands the original monuments’ meanings and extends the territory of possible memorial subjects deeply into Washington DC’s urban fabric. Fragmentary and dependent by nature VOICEOVER makes no claims toward cultural conclusions on historic events. Rather, VOICEOVER is a loud call to reawaken a nation to its relevant and multi-faceted past. It gives voice to the diverging understandings and conflicting perspectives of a multi-cultural society.


• Marcel Acosta, Executive Director, National Capital Planning Commission
• Mark Gardner, Principal, Jaklitsch / Gardner Architects
• David van der Leer, Executive Director, Van Alen Institute
• Thomas Luebke, Commission Secretary, U.S. Commission of Fine Arts
• Jonathan Marvel, Principal and Founder, Marvel Architects
• Julie Rhoad, President & CEO, The NAMES Project Foundation
• Deborah Rutter, President, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
• Kirk Savage, Professor, History, Art, and Architecture, University of Pittsburgh
• Jason Schupbach, Director of Design Programs, National Endowment for the Arts
• Eric Shaw, Director, District of Columbia Office of Planning
• Gay Vietzke, Superintendent, National Mall and Memorial Parks, National Park Service

Visit the official project website for more information about the competition.