The Dutch Holocaust Names Memorial by Studio Libeskind incorporates four volumes that represent 4 Hebrew characters that spell the word לזכר , meaning “In Memory of”. The volumes are arranged in a rectilinear configuration on the north-south axis along the main thoroughfare Weesperstraat and the Hoftuin pavilion to the East.
As visitors enter the Memorial they will encounter a labyrinth of passages articulated by two meter high brick walls carrying the message of Remembrance. Each of the four volumes are crafted from mirror-finished stainless steel that hovers above the walls of individually stacked bricks. 102,000 bricks will each be inscribed with a name, giving a tangible quantification to the many casualties, as well leaving 1000 blank bricks that will memorialize the unknown victims.
The brick—a ubiquitous material of the Netherlands – paired with the highly reflective and geometric forms of the steel letters reference the connection between Amsterdam’s past and present. At the intersection of the brick and metallic forms is a narrow void that creates the illusion that the steel letters are hovering above and represents an interruption in the history and culture of the Dutch people. This suspended emptiness, or ‘Breath of Air’, detaches the neighborhood from a future in which Dutch-Jewish families went missing.
Bouwery’s Johan van Lierop is the project architect of the Memorial and has been in charge of design coordination and supervision of the project on behalf of Studio Libeskind.