National Holocaust Memorial by Studio Libeskind


The reflective geometries by Studio Libeskind characterize the Holocaust memorial in Amsterdam

Studio Libeskind creates the National Holocaust Memorial of Names in Amsterdam and designs dramatic geometric shapes that carry the message of memory

Daniel Libeskind and Studio Libeskind have just unveiled the National Holocaust Memorial of Names in Amsterdam, a powerful design characterized by reflective volumes and dramatic geometries. The piece, commissioned by the Dutch Auschwitz Committee (Nederlands Auschwitz Comité), is intended to commemorate the Dutch Jews, Sinti and Roma murdered during the Holocaust, and the names of more than 102,000 victims are engraved on the brick walls.

The project is defined by a labyrinth of corridors. This is created by a series of relatively low brick volumes placed at different angles. They carry four mirrored pieces of architecture clad with stainless steel sheets, each of which forms a letter of the Hebrew alphabet and together form a word that is translated as “In memory of”. While the word can only be read in full from above, the striking composition creates a powerful dialogue with its surroundings, reflects buildings, light and passers-by and draws them into the composition.

The monument is located in the city’s Weesperstraat, extends over a generous 1,700 m² and is accessible to everyone. It offers landscaping and seating areas designed by Studio Libeskind in collaboration with Rijnboutt (also the local architect). The location has been carefully selected and is in the Jewish cultural quarter. It is adjacent to the Hermitage Museum and is a stone’s throw from the Amstel River and its Jewish community and attractions. The use of bricks in the structure reflects the local urban fabric.

“The Dutch lost most of their Jewish population in the Holocaust,” says Libeskind. “The National Holocaust Memorial of Names is the first Holocaust memorial to commemorate the Dutch victims and the first of its kind in Amsterdam. My personal connection as a child of Holocaust survivors made it increasingly important to be part of this important project. I hope it will be a place of contemplation, hope and an important reminder to fight hatred in all its forms for the people in the Netherlands and beyond. ‘

This significant monument will be officially inaugurated on September 19, 2021. §

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