Platz des europäischen Versprechens
Square of the European Promise
Bochum, Germany 2004 - 2016

Europe will not speak with one voice, but with many. Like the stars that give their light to the night, the people give their word to the future.
Jochen Gerz

A decade ago the first citizens of Bochum in the Ruhr-area of Germany followed the invitation of internationally renowned artist Jochen Gerz and gave a promise to Europe. Everyone kept their promise to themselves, but the names of those who pledged were inscribed into the ground of the Square of the European Promise.

As people from the region, Germany and later from all over Europe continued to participate, thousands of names filled the square. Today, 14,726 names are engraved in the 63 giant basalt stone plates on the 3,000 sqm square in the city centre. Each name represents a different and personal contribution. Like so many times before in its history, Europe has changed. What does that mean for the promises of yesterday and the Europe of tomorrow?

No other public square is the work of so many and no other square is dedicated to the living, not to the dead. Everyone visiting or passing it today will ask themselves what the people promised to Europe at the beginning of the 21st Century. What is the future they envision today? The future belongs to those who imagine it today.

The lighting concept is the creation of French designer Laurent Fachard, who previously lit the facade of the Elysée-Palace in Paris, and plans for the Square of the European Promise were developed by soan Architects.

Object: Square 3000sqm, 63 basalt stone plaques, 380x 180 cm, 14,726 names
(participants and promises) Site : Platz des europäischen Versprechens, Square of the European Promise, 44787 Bochum-Centre, Germany

Sabitha Saul
Sabitha Saul
Square of the European Promise (The "enemy states of Germany", 1931)

Zur Bedeutung des Platzes, Talk by Peter Friese, at the opening of the Square of the European Promise.    
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