Sited in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, the proposed memorial links the intimacy of the AIDS Memorial Grove to the encompassing daily urbanism of its surrounding city. This unique memorial serves not only the solemn need to commemorate but also the need to engage our growing consciousness of AIDS as a part of life ongoing. The design of a singular landscape surface engages three major features of the grove’s expansive site: the perimeter ridge and roadway, the descending slope of the ravine, and the valley floor. The gesture redefines the roadway above the grove, drapes the slope, and connects visitors in a sequence from street to meadow.
Projecting from the precipice wall southward, the landscape surface provides a plateau of discrete audio-reception points. An embedded constellation of sound domes enmeshes natural sounds with an archive of personal stories; sound is heard clearly from a single position, fading quickly to a whisper at adjacent locations. This effect is achieved with technology that is hyperbolically zoned, with parabolas indicating a point-focused sound wave, directed for the listener to hear one stream at a time. A remote, Web-based archive transmits stories, songs, and comments from the global AIDS community to the aural field, creating a real-time memorial from which meaning is found in experience and remembered over time.
In collaboration with Rodolphe el-Khoury (ReK Productions)