Artist Nekisha Durrett Visits Campus for Update on ARCH Project
Bryn Mawr students, faculty, and staff filled Old Library’s Great Hall recently to hear from artist Nekisha Durrett, President Kim Cassidy, Monument Lab’s Paul Farber, and Professor of History of Art Homay King on plans for the installation of Durett’s Don't Forget to Remember (Me), a monument addressing a legacy of exclusionary practices at the College, that will be placed in the Cloisters at the center of Old Library.
The project will use custom pavers to create pathways in the Cloisters’ courtyard which, when seen from above, create a woven path that “takes the shape of a knot that cannot be undone, symbolizing interconnectivity, and making visual that Bryn Mawr is reexamining its history to tell all of its stories.” Engraved pavers will include the names of those Black staff whose work was critical to building and operating the College, particularly in its early decades, but whose contributions were historically unrecognized.
Construction is expected to begin in the summer of 2024 and it’s estimated that upwards of 30,000 pavers will be needed for the project.
Durrett shared during the event that the project will also include grading work that will make the Cloisters accessible for all students.
Over the summer a team collected core samples of soil from Perry Garden, the site of the original Perry House Black Cultural Center. Those samples determined soil makeup and composition of the site so that Durrett can incorporate a small percentage of Perry House soil into the clay of the pavers.
Leading up to the construction phase, Durrett and her studio are doing fabrication and installation research while student interns Annalise Ashman ’24 and Katelyn Kim ’26 do archival research on the individuals whose names will be etched into the pavers.
Durrett's monument is the centerpiece of a collaboration between Bryn Mawr and Monument Lab known as The ARCH (Art Remediating Campus Histories) Project.