Temporary Memorials

After the earthquakes, Christchurch has become a city of transition, a state in-between memorial of the destruction and rebuilding. Monuments around town have popped up to not only revitalize local spirit, but also aid in the redevelopment of a new identity. Here are a few of the things I witnessed around the city:

The white chair memorial– a chair for every person that lost their life in the quakes, and each chair is different, painted white. It is an extremely moving piece to pass by, but the artist was clear that this is only temporary- just as all things in life are. The official memorial is currently in the process of being built.


The transitional cathedral- because the main cathedral was destroyed, a temporary structure was built from large cardboard tubes and plastic sheeting. Everything is temporary material and even the altar is constructed from cardboard. It is actually quite unique, attracting a lot of tourists and visitors outside of the congregation.


The DanceOMat- Insert a gold coin into the laundry machine, plug in your ipod, and dance away! A disco ball hangs from the center and if pass by at night you may be able to catch a dance-off or two.


Public Sculptures such as this “Tree Houses for Swamp Dwellers” by Julia Morison, or ten modular objects that interpreted as something between trees and houses.


There are numerous other sculptures, memorials, and things in the city such as the “Re-Start Mall,” which is a mall that has been built out of shipping containers in the center of the city where they have everything you need such food stalls, cafes, bathrooms, and clothing/ souvenir stores. You can also see some of the other public art project here on the Scape website. 

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