monument for all victims

captured void as a monument

location: Ljubljana, Slovenia
project date: 2013
completion date: –
area: 750 m2
type: monument
source: open competition, honourable mention
client: Ministry of labour, family, social affairs and equal opportunities

project team: Aljoša Dekleva, Tina Gregorič, Matej Andraž Vogrinčič, Vid Zabel, Naia Sinde

model: Samo Kralj, Nuša Jurkovič
vizualisations: Matej Mejak

The monument was designed geometrically (canonical), clear and simple, but multifaceted and ambiguous:

– floating solid volume at the level of the city
– the connection with the city, important presence and addressing the by-passer > object identification
– interior – a place of contemplation, commemoration, memory, understanding, contact with the sky, isolation from its surroundings > object isolation and meditation
– “under space” – covered square at level of the street, space representing the weight of war, weight of victims, weight of the nonsense of war, weight of loss and weight of disputes.

The space of memory is a space of concentration, contemplation, meditation, between the crowns of the trees, but insulated from the everyday life of the city. A peaceful meditative space is designed for people of all beliefs for every day, with the purpose of encouraging peace and freedom as opposed to war.

Trees are an important spatial element that shapes both the interior (crowns as soft in contrast to strict geometry) and “under space” (trunks as a seeming vertical support bearing the void). Both spaces therefore change in accordance with all phases of design, and colour changes in leaves and trees as a whole. The concept includes three existing chestnut trees that have been present in the area for many years and are actually the primary tree species of Zvezda park.

fear, anxiety, purification

Access to a space of memory represents a particular spatial experience, emotional spiritual purification of memory, and a reminder of the nonsense of war and the memory of all the victims in the whole territory of Slovenia. From the central public space one enters into the memory of history. The sequence of entering the interior is made on a series of specific extreme feelings. Getting close to the stairwell and placed under the volume of the monument, one feels the weight above his head, fear. Going up the stairs one goes through an extremely narrow (1.2m) and tall (14m) space, which gives a feeling of restlessness and anxiety. Afterwards one enters the huge space of memory – the space of purification. The purpose of the monument is to inspire people to take action through art and contemplation, to foster respect for the highest aspiration of humanity.