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Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center, Querkraft Architekten

Topographical Memory: Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center by Querkraft Architekten

With the subterranean Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center in Kyiv, Querkraft Architekten have designed a documentation site and monument devoted to the spatial and temporal remembrance of the Massacre of Babyn Yar, which took place from 1941 to 1943. Directly at the location of the former Babyn Yar ravine, a dramatic archway greets visitors before a steep slope traces a descent into the dark past as a topographical memory of the act.

The museum pathway ultimately flows into the light-flooded Democratic Space, a bright, positive and open terrace landscape that opens up as a hyperbolic paraboloid roof in the upper area in order to take its leave from visitors as they move into the surrounding nature.

Querkraft Architekten explain that the core element providing access to this non-linear spatial sequence of present, past and future is a 270-metre incision in the landscape that takes the form of a walkable sculpture. With their design of a topographically conceived visualization, the Viennese studio prevailed in an international competition against rivals such as Dorte Mandrup and Merz.

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