GARDEN OF REMEMBRANCE

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With the design and development of the Garden of Remembrance, the architects have en­deavoured to heighten the experience, knowledge and understanding of the visitor and pilgrim to the War Museum and Women’s Memorial. The Garden of Remembrance also aims to make a contribution to the process of healing of South African society, without negating the interest of specific groups or individuals.

 

The Garden of Remembrance consists of a wall with approximately 35 000 names of the wom­en, children and civilians men (black and white) that died in the concentration camps. There is a small amphitheatre at the entrance to the central monument space. Flowerbeds, paving and graveled sections link the elements of the garden.

 

Symbolically, the Garden of Remembrance aims to achieve the following:

 

• As narrative, each of the names reminds us of a person who lost his or her life in this bitter conflict. The individual stories combine to form a combined narrative along with the various sym­bols on the site as a whole.

 

• A place that will allow the visitor to experience the significance of the Women’s Memorial and the events that surround it.

 

• As a route, it allows the visitor to come into contact with the names, as well as creating the sense of a pilgrimage that invites reflection and meditation.

 

• A sensory experience that is more than merely visual. The stone-clad surfaces with en­graved names allow to people to let their fingers slide over the lettering. The sensory experiences engendered by the various elements include sight, sound, texture, perspective, nearness and distance, smell, light and shade.

 

• As a symbol of transformation and healing, the events surrounding the South African War remain powerful reminders that the battle against violence aimed at women and children should remain uppermost in our cultural consciousness.

 

The Garden of Remembrance makes a contribution to the process of healing South African soci­ety through a narrative journey of the past.

 

COMPLETION DATE: 2015