The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall.

Credit: Flickr/Rose Trinh


Remembering on Veterans Day: People tend to think of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall as the singular monument to veterans of that war. And of course they do. The powerful design by Maya Lin, only just a 21-year-old undergraduate when her understated, abstract, minimal entry won the memorial competition, changed the way that designers and citizens alike think of monuments.

But it is far from the only Vietnam memorial. Today, for example, the Montana State Vietnam Veterans Memorial celebrates its 25th anniversary. And it's far more representative of the war memorials still being dedicated today. Montana's Vietnam memorial specifically features a statue of an angel supporting or rescuing an American soldier. It's a heroic depiction of American soldiers, and it makes no comment on the war itself.

The Montana State Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

The Montana State Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Credit: Flickr/Rachael Voorhees


The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall, a solemn, angular scar on the Mall, does not shy away from remarking on the war. Yet the abstract wall is not the monument's only word on the war. The national Vietnam Veterans Memorial also includes the Three Servicemen Statue. (Note that the Three Servicemen Statue on the National Mall is not the only Three Servicemen Statue—there's another one in Florida.) The third part of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is another statue, the Vietnam Women's Memorial.

The Three Servicemen Statue.

The Three Servicemen Statue.

Credit: Flickr/Jonathan Colman


In an interview, George Dickie, who designed the Vietnam Women's Memorial, describes the fight to place it and the politics of dedicating a Vietnam War memorial specifically to women. (The memorial is centered around a statue by sculptor Glenna Goodacre that depicts three nurses attending a wounded soldier.) The national Vietnam Veterans Memorial is often described as one of the most successful memorials in the nation—perhaps because people tend to think specifically of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. 

The Vietnam Women's Memorial.

The Vietnam Women's Memorial.

Credit: Flickr/Jeff Kubina


Today, the national monument is still a design in progress: Ennead Architects is still at work on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Education Center. [Centre Daily Times]

More News:

The New Orleans’ National WWII Museum debuts their 26-person Pullman train car that simulates the experience of heading to basic training during the period. [USA Today]

Peek at a rendering of one Google’s new barges, slated to float in the San Francisco Bay. Darrell Etherington writes: “if the finished project looks anything like this, then Google will have moved very quickly from having almost no brick-and-mortar customer-facing presence, to having one of the most ostentatious storefront-style experiences in human history.” [TechCrunch]

Designers picked up two of The Wall Street Journal Magazine’s 2013 Innovator Awards. David Adjaye wins for “a penchant for simple, bold form-making, combined with a distaste for preciousness in materials.” In landscape architecture, Thomas Wultz took a prize for being a “storyteller, one who embraces the complexity of modern life while seeking meaning and narrative in both natural and man-made environments.” [WSJ Magazine]

The Houston Chronicle picks up Christopher Hawthorne’s editorial urging Houston voters to save the Astrodome. Alas, it’s too little, too late. [Houston Chronicle]

AIA Kansas City is introducing the first industry award for sports architecture. Kansas City firm Populous designed the Olympic Stadium for the 2012 Olympic Games in London as well as the stadium for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, so if you’re for a horse to bet on…. [The Kansas City Star]

A U.S. Court of Appeals upheld a $3.2 million award for a Texas architecture firm in the copyright case, Kipp Flores Architects, LLC v. Hallmark Design Homes, L.P. [PR Newswire]

The Nissan BladeGlider may be a solid car, and definitely stands up as a piece of blobitecture. [The Blaze]

Images used with permission courtesy a Creative Commons license with Flickr users Rachael Voorhees, Rose Trinh, Jeff Kubina, and Jonathan Colman.

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