The building is a historically protected landmark, listed in the D.C. Inventory of Historic Sites and the National Register of Historic Places. The design strategy is derived directly from the architectural intent. Therefore, there is visual transparency through the exhibition, continuing the Miesian concept of transparency.
The 8,000 sq ft space encompasses displays, films, music videos, public feedback opportunities, historical narrative, and engagement opportunities. They provide vibrant, content-driven discussions in an easily accessible area so local members can learn about D.C.’s crucial role in the civil rights movement. The topics include both the national movement towards ending racism and the D.C. drive towards representation in the federal government. A “community gallery” displays personal artifacts collected from D.C. residents that tell broader cultural and political history.
Design + Execution
The design is inviting, and there is a low barrier to entry, allowing visitors of all ages to participate. Part of the welcoming gesture centers on analog interactive where the visitors are provided with the opportunity to fill out card catalog-like cards posing questions to the Library. A “community gallery” displays personal artifacts collected from D.C. residents that tell broader cultural and political history.
Wendy Evans Joseph
Kubik Maltbie (fabrication)
Bluecadet (media design)
Workhorse (graphic design)
Openbox (community engagement)