CHARLESTON – Civic memorials and monuments are cultural, political and social persuasions. Intent and meaning are inherently preordained and bestowed. As societal values shift, “meanings” evolve. Such is the case today, where wholesale removal of civic tributes to historical figures, causes and events are fueled by cultural rifts, igniting protests and backlash. This Movement has drawn sharp lines between points of view, igniting that which has simmered below the surface and that which has existed for hundreds of years.

In this context, we might ask or should ask: “What role does design – architecture, in particular – have in engaging these societal challenges?” How can architecture frame or reframe this momentous period to contextualize the moment and its meaning, lest we forget?

A three-part moderated symposium to examine this question is being hosted virtually by the Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston. Moderated by Millicent Brown, Ph.D., the discussions will engage respondents from the academy, architecture, historians and others.

Millicent Brown

Millicent Brown, Ph.D., will moderate a series of three “Memorials | Monuments | Memory | Meaning” webinars beginning on Wednesday, Sept. 23. A lifelong advocate for economic, social and educational justice in communities of color, Brown co-founded the “Somebody Had to Do It” project to identify children like herself who were the first to desegregate previously all-white schools.

Session 1: The Past:What brought America to this point?
Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020 at 6 p.m.

Session 2: The Present:Why did 8:46 minutes make a difference?
Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020 at 6 p.m.

Session 3: The Future:Can this moment be captured architecturally for future generations to learn from it?”   Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020 at 6 p.m.

Respondents

Session 1:
Lisa Brock, Ph.D., Academic Director, Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership
Robert Rosen, Attorney, Historian, Author

Session 2:
Frank Knaack, Director, American Civil Liberties Union of South Carolina
Antonio Tillis, Ph.D., Interim President, University of Houston-Downtown

Session 3:
Mario Gooden, Architect, Theorist, Author, Educator, Columbia University
Robert Macdonald, Director Emeritus, Museum of the City of New York
Tamara Butler, Ph.D., Executive Director, Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture

For more information, or to register for the free Zoom webinars on “Memorials | Monuments | Memory | Meaning,” please contact Mimi Rose of the Clemson Design Center in Charleston, miriamr@clemson.edu or 843-723-1747.