(Image courtesy of US World War I Centennial Commission)

Finalists named for US World War I memorial design contest

Posted on centenarynews.com on 24 August 2015
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The US World War One Centennial Commission has announced the five finalists for the competition to design a national memorial to American troops who fought in the First World War.

The monument will be sited in Washington's Pershing Park, close to the White House. 

More than 350 artworks were submitted for the first stage of a contest open to professionals, university-level students and 'any other interested participants.'

The finalists were announced by Robert Dalessandro, Chair of the World War One Centennial Commission, on August 19th 2015:

*Plaza to the Forgotten War - submitted by Brian Johnsen, AIA; Sebastian Schmaling, AIA, LEEP AP; and Andrew Cesarz, at Johnsen Schmaling Architects, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

*World War One Memorial Concept - submitted by Devin Kimmel, Principal at Kimmel Studio, llc in Annapolis, Maryland.

*The Weight of Sacrifice - submitted by Joseph Weishaar of Chicago.

*An American Family Portrait Wall in the Park - submitted by STL Architects in Chicago.

 *Heroes' Green - submitted by Maria Counts, of Counts Studio in Brooklyn, New York.

Comments are welcome from the public. More details of each design can be found here

The statue of General John Pershing, America's WW1 military commander, in Pershing Park, Washington (Photo: US World War One Centennial Commission)

Centennial Commission Chair Robert Dalessando thanked all those who'd entered the competition. Each design was an important tribute to the veterans of WW1, he said.

"We want these artworks to be lasting tributes, as well, so all Stage I submissions will remain available for viewing on our website. They will also become a part of the permanent record of the Centennial Commission."

Mr Dalessandro said the aim was to 'bring forward the best possible plan for all parties.'

In the next stage, the five finalists will work in consultation with the commission, public agencies and other interested parties to further develop and refine their initial concepts.  

The winner is due to be announced early in 2016 after recommendations have been made by the competition jury, drawn from the government, the military, the arts and the citizens of Washington.

Armistice Day

More than 116,000 American troops died in the closing months of the First World War, more than fell in Korea and Vietnam combined.

The Centennial Commission points out 'alone among the four great wars of the 20th century, there is no national memorial to World War l' in the US capital.

Dedication of the National World War I Memorial in Pershing Park is planned for November 11th 2018, the centenary of the Armistice. 

The project is being funded by money raised from the American public.

"Please remember that even if we get the perfect design we can’t build the memorial without support," a Centennial Commission spokesman said.

"We invite you to help us in our goal, to create the new WW1 Memorial using only private donations. The veterans of WW1 earned their own memorial, and we can build it for them."

Full information about the National World War One Memorial design competition can be found on the website of the US World War One Centennial Commission.

Centenary News reported on the launch of the contest in June 2015.

Source: United States World War One Centennial Commission

Images courtesy of United States World War One Centennial Commission/TechApplication

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News