Show more

Circle of the Diaspora

NY

Sculpture
Artist

Rodney Leon

Description Show more

In 1991, a burial ground was discovered during the course of excavation to build a new federal courthouse. Most of the remains were exhumed, but more than 400 were ceremoniously reinterred in October 2003. This memorial commemorates the lives of 20,000 enslaved Africans who were laid to rest in the Civic Center area in the 17th and 18th centuries. It reads, "For all those who were lost / For all those who were stolen / For all those who were left behind / For all those who are not forgotten."

The Circle of Diaspora, which is represented by the open ring in the memorial, has multiple symbols from various backgrounds that can be seen. Each design represent symbols of humanity. Walkthrough the monument and entering into the open ring, the symbols from left to right resemble the progression of the physical meanings to spiritual meanings as the granite floor gradually lowers itself to the cemetery underneath the memorial. The reason for the placement of each symbol on the memorial for the granite memorial represents a vessel. The memorial is open on the inside, representing a chamber of individual space, giving the visitors the opportunity for internalized reflection. As a memorial, the architects' goal is to show that the granite block that you first see as you pass by Broadway is much more than a solid large piece of rock, but a symbol of the thousands of different stories and lives that have been affected by the Middle Passage.

In 1991, a burial ground was discovered during the course of excavation to build a new federal courthouse. Most of the remains were exhumed, but more than 400 were ceremoniously reinterred in October 2003. This memorial commemorates the lives of 20,000 enslaved Africans who were laid to rest in the Civic Center area in the 17th and 18th centuries. It reads, "For all those who were lost / For all those who were stolen / For all those who were left behind / For all those who are not forgotten."

The Circle of Diaspora, which is represented by the open ring in the memorial, has multiple symbols from various backgrounds that can be seen. Each design represent symbols of humanity. Walkthrough the monument and entering into the open ring, the symbols from left to right resemble the progression of the physical meanings to spiritual meanings as the granite floor gradually lowers itself to the cemetery underneath the memorial. The reason for the placement of each symbol on the memorial for the granite memorial represents a vessel. The memorial is open on the inside, representing a chamber of individual space, giving the visitors the opportunity for internalized reflection. As a memorial, the architects' goal is to show that the granite block that you first see as you pass by Broadway is much more than a solid large piece of rock, but a symbol of the thousands of different stories and lives that have been affected by the Middle Passage.

Tours

The Commons - The Heart of New York City

Duane Elk, New York City, NY, US 00000

Nearby
Unearthed 350 feet
New York Conspiracy of 1741 358 feet
An Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery passed 358 feet
Triumph of the Human Spirit 465 feet
Africa Rising 473 feet
Tilted Arc 502 feet
Roger Brown Mosaic 504 feet
Foley Square Federal Office Building 515 feet
Foley Square 525 feet
#Public Art #Artwork #Sculpture