2020 results

Camp Barker Memorial
by After Architecture

Camp Barker Memorial, Vermont Avenue Portal
Sam Oberter

After Architecture has designed a memorial dedicated to African American history, which features three charred wood structures with brass interiors.

Camp Barker Memorial frames the grounds of Garrison Elementary School in Washington DC. The memorial comprises a series of gateways that simultaneously address the unmarked history of the site and its modern-day function as a public elementary school and park.

Originally housing union barracks, the site became a contraband camp, providing shelter to those escaping slavery during the civil war. Placed on three sides of the city block, the gateways become part of the urban fabric and subvert the typical monument.

In contrast to the capital’s white marble landmarks, charred wood and blackened bronze reliefs recall the resiliency of those escaping slavery.


This project has been longlisted in the installation design project category of Dezeen Awards 2020.

Designer: After Architecture
Project: Camp Barker Memorial

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