Memorializing horrific events with architecture is necessarily fraught. Should a building attempt to reflect the brutality and trauma experienced by the victims of unimaginable violence? Should it create a forbidding or unsettling environment? Some architects say yes—the best-known example being Daniel Libeskind and his 2001 Jewish Museum Berlin, with its zigzagging plan and slice-like, angled windows.
The designers of the Melbourne Holocaust Museum, in Elsternwick, one of the Australian city’s southeastern suburbs, decided to go in a different direction. “We struggled with what role the architecture should play,” says Kerstin Thompson, founder of Kerstin Thompson Architects (KTA). Ultimately, she decided that “the building was not the right medium to encounter discomfort.” Instead, “that should be the role of curation and the exhibits.”
You have 0 complimentary articles remaining.
Unlimited access + premium benefits for as low as $1.99/month.