As you know, Pasadena is home to one of the strongest Armenian communities in the diaspora. As such, it’s important to ensure that there is a public space of reflection and remembrance for the victims of the Armenian Genocide. Last year community leaders came together and formed the Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial Committee to establish and maintain a public memorial of the Armenian Genocide within the City.
The proposed site for the public artwork is Memorial Park in the City of Pasadena and the planned dedication in 2015 will coincide with 100th anniversary commemorations of the Armenian Genocide. The Memorial will be constructed and maintained entirely with private funding.
The Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial Committee received 17 submissions for the design of the Memorial and an independent 3 judge panel unanimously selected the design by Pasadena Art Center Environmental Design student Catherine Menard.
The central feature of memorial’s minimalist design—a carved-stone basin of water straddled by a tripod arrangement of three columns leaning into one another—is a single drop of water that falls from the highest point every 21 seconds, each “teardrop” representing one life lost. Over the course of one year, 1.5 million tears will fall into the pool, the estimated number of victims of the Armenian Genocide.
The Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial Committee was deeply impressed by Catherine, who developed and presented an emotionally compelling design for a historical event that she initially knew nothing about. We hope that this memorial will inspire a similar emotional connection in those who encounter it, for generations to come.
Details regarding the project’s budget and construction will be developed over the next several months, with official groundbreaking anticipated in 2014 and dedication of the completed memorial on April 24, 2015. The Memorial Committee has entered into a partnership with the Community Foundation of the Verdugos. Established in 1956, the Foundation has over $7 million in assets and will manage all donations to the Pasadena Armenian Genocide Memorial, ensuring complete transparency and reliability.
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