MONTREAL HOLOCAUST MUSEUM
Location: Montreal, Canada
This project attempts to acknowledge three important yet contradictory conditions of diaspora and placemaking for the Montreal Holocaust Museum.
1. The iconic form respects the scale and façade line of St. Laurent Boulevard while creating a new sense of place.
2. The form itself acknowledges the incomplete nature and loss of the Jewish people after the Shoah and provides the possibility of a new center of memory and hope.
3. The stepped form makes absence palpable and recognizes the modern dialectic of presence and absence of which the Jew was an essential player.
The basic volumes of the museum are two crossing stepped forms, one above grade and one below grade. Between them is a third element, the transparent entry and agora, which links the solid and opaque volumes but precludes their attempt to become whole again.
The lower stepping form accommodates the dynamic and interchanging aspects of the program such as the agora, the remembrance and oral history spaces, temporary exhibitions, and the auditorium. The stepped back volume above grade hosts the permanent collection of the museum.