The Commemorative to Enslaved Peoples of Southern Maryland has earned two national awards in 2022. 

The immersive art experience, constructed on St. Mary’s College of Maryland’s campus, honors the story of resilience, persistence, and creative problem-solving that defined the lives of the enslaved individuals that lived in St. Mary’s City between 1750 and 1815. 

Credit: St. Mary’s College of Maryland

This summer, the commemorative was named to the Top 100 public art projects by CODAworx, a global online community that celebrates design projects that integrate commissioned art into an interior, architectural, or public space. 

Secondly, the Society for Experiential Graphic Design (SEGD) named the commemorative an honor award winner in its annual competition to recognize and promote excellence in contemporary experiential graphic design. One of the judges remarked, “This project is stunning in the most delicate and refined ways. It is refreshing to see a memorial of names reflected in the shape of a home. The shape and scale allow visitors of all ages a more intimate connection to the lives of enslaved peoples. The house is a beacon of light during the day and the night, with its reflective surface catching sunlight and light shining at night. A beautiful commemorative creation!”

Additionally, for its work on the single-day special event “The Sacred Journey: Re-Making Our World Anew,” St. Mary’s College of Maryland’s Office of Institutional Advancement won a 2022 Circle of Excellence gold award from the International Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). 

Constructed on the College’s campus, the commemorative provides visitors with the space to acknowledge and learn from the lives of those who once toiled there while providing a place for reflection and introspection about the nature of slavery and its connections to modern society.

Learn more about the Learn more about how St. Mary’s College honors the enslaved by visiting https://www.smcm.edu/honoring-enslaved/.


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