Silhouettes of Memory is a design proposal to commemorate Istanbul’s thousands of years of epidemics history and the health labourers of the coronavirus pandemic. The project creates both contextual and architectural narrative to suggest a memorial garden design where the site is an important historical health zone with its surroundings, and one of the central points of the city.
“Everything could have ended tomorrow. We humans are fragile by ourselves. Our strength lies in being part of a community.”
Nowadays, when the impacts of the pandemic are still evident, it is not far to consider cities through health, society and apprehensions. But would it be possible to remember how interconnected our lives were till the next pandemic? Silhouettes of Memory project tries to find answers if it is possible to remember the memory of the city, the memory of the place, through design. And from this point of view the project attempts to read Istanbul in parallel with its Ecology and Hydrology infrastructure in the perspective of Epidemic and Health history.
Remembering that people were strong only in unity during the epidemic, direct the project to consider the first forms of assembly areas and examine the basic components and proportions of these spaces for the design. “Agora”, which means the square where people came together for various purposes in the ancient Greek city, came to the fore in this direction and became a part of the conceptual theme of the project by combining with the urban narrative.
Project combines six different conceptual components, which come from the reading of the city, in the design of a Memory Garden. “Fragments of Memory” implies an area that could play the role of an “Agora” to unite the disjointed structures in the site.”Sunken Cemetery” implies the Armenian cemetery which has almost disappeared today where the project site is located. It is an unforgettable memory of Taksim as the ground of the place.
The Memory Garden is a living landscape designed to immortalize healthcare workers, offering a section from life that comes alive with water and fades without water.