In Memory Of: Designing Contemporary MemorialsSpencer Bailey, with a foreword by David Adjaye

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"A fascinating and insightful meditation on the act of memory as a built reality. " – Daniel Libeskind, architect

An extraordinary book that explores the art, architecture, and design of memorials around the world from the late twentieth century to today – an important book for our time

Memorials hold a special position in the cultural memory of communities, and collective consciousness of communities, cities, and countries. In Memory Of presents an extraordinary and moving collection of more than 60 exceptional structures commemorating some of the most destructive events of the 20th and 21st centuries, including war, genocide, terrorism, famine, and slavery from around the world.

This important book highlights memorials built since 1982, featuring works from Berlin to Washington, D.C., from Montgomery, Alabama to Santiago, Chile, each urging us never to forget.

In Memory Of features memorials designed by some of today's leading architects, including David Adjaye, Tadao Ando, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Peter Eisenman, Daniel Libeskind, Maya Lin, Snøhetta, and Peter Zumthor. It also features memorials designed by artists like Elmgreen & Dragset, Isamu Noguchi, Taryn Simon, and Rachel Whiteread. The book includes well-known structures like Maya Lin's iconic Vietnam War Memorial, completed in 1982 in Washington, D.C. and more recent ones like the poignant National Memorial for Peace and Justice, completed by MASS Design Group in Montgomery, Alabama in 2018.

With thoughtful essays on the subjects of hope, strength, grief, loss, and fear, and a moving foreword by Sir David Adjaye, In Memory Of helps to contextualize the projects and addresses the emotional aspects of memorialization. Beautifully designed with a minimal, reflective cover, and illustrated with 200 photographs, this book calls out to be experienced, felt, looked at, interpreted, and read in a variety of ways.



  • Format: Hardback
  • Size: 290 × 250 mm (11 3/8 × 9 7/8 in)
  • Pages: 240 pp
  • Illustrations: 200 illustrations
  • ISBN: 9781838661441

Spencer Bailey is an American writer, editor, and journalist. He has written at length about architecture, art, culture, design, and technology, among other subjects. Bailey is also the co-founder of the media company The Slowdown and co-host of the Time Sensitive podcast.

"In a year filled with so much grief and mourning, it might seem odd to read a book about the architecture of memorials—but how and where we grieve together is an important part of our civic identity and helps define our public spaces... [a] poignant collection." – Town & Country

"In this beautifully written and stunningly illustrated book, Spencer Bailey explores the forms and meanings of the most architecturally and artistically significant memorials since the early 1980s, and shows how, through a combination of abstraction, tangible materials, light, and shadow, memorials can give form to unspeakable sorrow and loss." – Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D., author of The Body Keeps the Score

"A fascinating and insightful meditation on the act of memory as a built reality. Especially today when memory is under attack and has become a political issue, this book demonstrates how memorials can bring people together in a meaningful and inspired way." – Daniel Libeskind, architect

"In a moving and highly personal quest Spencer Bailey collects memories arrested in time and space that act like beacons of hope and places of redemption. An essential book reflecting on the architecture of appeasement." – Lidewij Edelkoort, trend forecaster and design curator

"Memorials and sites of memory are finally, necessarily at the forefront of our contemporary discussions around a purposeful and honest design of our public realm. They exist at the intersection of the hope for a shared common civic identity, and a deep individual loss amongst intractable personal grief. No other built space bridges these gaps so profoundly so empathically, so urgently than the memorial. Or at least this is what I learned from Spencer Bailey's profund and prescient new compendium, which we should all have a copy of."—Michael Murphy, founding principal and CEO, MASS Design Group

"Throughout history, memory has been the powerful impetus for the most breathtaking architectures--monuments whose role is to bring the world to a stop, even if just for a few minutes. Likewise, from its cover to the choice of images, this moving book pays respect to rites of life by asking the reader to put it on pause, to absorb and reflect."—Paola Antonelli, senior curator, architecture and design, The Museum of Modern Art

"Memorials have never been more controversial. Here's a way forward.”—Bloomberg