The Catholic Memorial at Ground Zero
St. Joseph's Chapel
New York, NY
The window suggests a flower fearlessly growing from the ashes of destruction, optimistic but far from triumphant. Death and resurrection, hate and love, co-exist in the design. The green fronds cross the red and turn to a muddy brown.
Architecturally, the composition resolves two difficult issues: the low ceiling, and uniting the disparate window openings around the main entrance. Responding to the site with respect and restraint yields a result that is both visually compelling and completely integrated.
Compositionally, the window moves from collapse to rebirth. This mirrors the paradoxical theme of the window: one finds strength in sorrow and hope in desolation. The somber hues project inherent sadness, while small areas of bright yellow promise better things to come. But many promises are not kept, and hate can be self- perpetuating. Is this the end of a cycle or the beginning of one?