The sea of flowers left by mourners following the Martin Place siege will be at the heart of a permanent memorial to honour those who lost their lives, NSW Premier Mike Baird announced today.
“This tragic event changed our city and we will forever feel the loss of Tori Johnson and Katrina Dawson as we go about our daily lives,” Mr Baird said.
“This enduring memorial is intended to pay tribute to the victims and survivors who, by sheer chance, were caught up in that dreadful day.
“We have worked closely with the Dawson and Johnson families to choose a design that we believe captures the spirit of the outpouring of support we witnessed from people all over NSW.”
A NSW Government panel comprising the NSW Government Architect, Peter Poulet, Elizabeth Ann Macgregor, Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art, and Bridget Smyth, Design Director of the City of Sydney, unanimously selected a design concept by Professor Richard Johnson AO MBE, of Johnson Pilton Walker, out of a shortlist of four.
Inspired by the many floral tributes that were left in Martin Place in the days following the siege, the memorial will feature hundreds of stylistic symbols of flowers to be inlaid into the pavement in Martin Place.
“The design concept creates a quiet, reflective and symbolic memory of the floral tributes left in the days following the siege, while working with the functional surroundings of the very busy pedestrian area that Martin Place is,” Professor Johnson said.
“Hundreds of floral cubes will be inlaid into the granite pavings of Martin Place in a scattered starburst pattern. At night they will shine with specialised lighting.”
Mr Baird said the memorial would be a visual reminder of the kindness of the people of Sydney, who came in their thousands to leave flowers and cards in the days after the siege.
“It is appropriate that the memory of this community spirit live on here in Martin Place. Professor Johnson has created a symbolic commemoration of our shared grief which recalls the courage of those involved in the siege.”
The one-year anniversary of the Martin Place Siege will be commemorated on Tuesday 15 December with a public ceremony at twilight.