Space | J. Meejin Yoon

J. Meejin Yoon

Sean Collier

Memorial, 2015

32 Granite

Stone Blocks (milled within a 0.5mm tolerance)


6,300 sq.

ft., 320 tons of Jet Mist Granite

Höweler + Yoon Architecture, LLP

This public art tour is an investigation of the space within and around the select pieces of public art on MIT’s campus. Walk around, through, and under pieces to find different relationships and perspectives.

This tour was created by Joe Faraguna, Class of 2020 in Bioengineering. Faraguna was a List Center Student Guide for all four years of his undergraduate career. 

On the night of April 18th, 2013, MIT police officer Sean Collier was murdered by the Tsarnaev brothers as they fled the Boston Marathon bombing they had perpetrated. In the wake of this profound loss, architecture department head J. Meejin Yoon designed the memorial and installed it alongside a multidisciplinary team of engineers, architects, students, professors, police officers, and construction workers. The 32 blocks of granite counterbalance each other through compression, sending a message of strength through unity. The open vault sheltered by the blocks is the heart of the piece, the center of an open hand that communicates latent strength, acceptance, and devotion. A black square off to the side marks the site of Collier’s murder. The scattered lights are projections of key stars on the night of his death. The metal bumps spell 179, Collier’s badge number, in brail, an endless meditation on his sacrifice. Walk around and under the memorial. How does the mixture of solid granite and open aperture create spaces within the sculpture? What do the spaces feel like?

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