Project Description

Shoulder to Shoulder memorializes those who stood firm in the face of inequity and danger in Birmingham around the events of 1963.  We propose to recall these actions through a series of articulated posts rising from the ground to 13 feet high.  The posts represent the approximately 6000 young Foot Soldiers who marched in Birmingham in 1963.  They are arranged in pairs, demonstrating how a movement can be energized through a critical mass of people taking action. At night the inside surface between the post pairs is illuminated to project internal light signifying the human spirit. The situation of the monument site at the corner of a downtown intersection means that pedestrians who walk down the edge of the park as well as those heading into the park will interact with the monument. Posts are spaced widely enough to encourage pedestrians to walk through the posts allowing pedestrians to become part of the monument and encouraging the symbolism of walking in the footsteps of the unknown heroes.  This proximity increases the potential for empathy with those who sacrificed before. From a distance the monument appears as a field of posts that abstractly relate to elements of human form.