From the Nominator
"The Apart-Together COVID-19 Remembrance was a two-part project involving a community art project and soundwalk for the entire campus community, including volunteers and patients, that recognized and honored their experience with COVID-19.
We held a series of in-person petal painting days for more than 2,000 employees, students, patients, and volunteers, which involved painting a wooden petal sliced from reclaimed trees from the Stanford Hospital campus to reflect the individuals' experience with COVID-19. Those petals were then joined together to create more than 600 flowers, representing the (at the time) more than 600,000 lives lost to COVID. Each branch was sliced into petals by an internal medicine doctor. Our artist, a lecturer in art and art history, worked with the facilities team to create an 8-foot sculpture with three wood bases representing the university, School of Medicine, and hospitals. Intertwined metal branches sprout upward from the bases, symbolizing our unity and resilience, capped by large, thick medallions of wood representing stability and growth.
The project culminated in an installation event that included a dedication of the sculpture and the "planting" of the flowers by attendees. The event featured music by a medical student and remarks by the Provost, Dean of the Medical School and Spiritual Services, and the CEOs of the adult and children's hospitals.
The second part of the project was a Soundwalk that featured narration and music by Stanford students and faculty, designed to be listened to while walking in Arboretum area of campus, home of the art installation."
From the Judges
The panel was unanimous in the decision that Stanford's remembrance of COVID-19 should receive the Grand Gold. It was a creative, accessible, and touching monument to those who gave so much during the pandemic, and it honored the loss of life in a beautiful and meaningful tribute. There were multiple ways which the constituents were able to engage with the event and it seemed to have a broad impact across the community.