National September 11 Memorial Museum
CLIENT Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and World Trade Center Memorial Foundation
LOCATION Ground Zero, New York City
Hired during the formative phase of the development of the World Trade Center site—about three years after September 11, 2001—H+R was tasked with jumpstarting the curatorial and planning work for what would become the National September 11 Memorial Museum.
As interpretive planners, H+R's prime responsibilities were to craft a compelling narrative framework for telling the story of 9/11, provide recommendations on exhibit organization and research potential assets for the museum. By the conclusion of the project, H+R had organized several thousand potential assets—including artifacts like heat-warped steel tridents, personal belongings, and dust-covered furnishings; oral histories, photographs, artwork and various forms of digital media—into a custom searchable database.
H+R also worked closely with the project’s two architectural firms, Davis Brody Bond and Snøhetta, to develop circulation patterns, recommend building materials and systems, analyze the sequence for loading large artifacts, develop project schedules and create budgets. Additionally, H+R was tasked with making recommendations on how to deal with sensitive and disturbing materials in the creation of a special children’s exhibit.
I always reflect back on the fine work we accomplished together as the true genesis of the Museum's heart and soul.... You will definitely find the H+R spirit in the place.
Chief curator (and former H+R content consultant)