Today, we’re joining communities around the world to celebrate the power of generosity. Thanks to the support of our readers, we’re able to provide an essential platform for independent, nonprofit public-interest journalism on architecture, landscape, and urbanism — work that you can’t find anywhere else, that’s available to all, free of charge and free of advertising.
Earlier this year, we worked with artist and designer Chat Travieso on “A Nation of Walls,” which explored the overlooked history of race barriers in American cities. As Travieso writes:
Along NW 12th Avenue from 62nd to 67th Streets in Miami’s Liberty City runs a low concrete wall that might be taken as an unassuming retaining wall. It is in fact a piece of racist infrastructure — the remnant of a barrier built in the late 1930s to isolate a Black neighborhood from a White one.
Since 2017, I have been mapping and researching race barriers across the U.S. It is precisely in their commonplace visibility in cities that these barriers denote an important chapter in the history of racist building practices and civic administration. Unlike a discriminatory law or a withheld opportunity, a race wall is solid, simple, right there at the end of the street. These features of the public built environment remain, to this day, oppressively normalized.
Published this fall, Chat’s article has already been extensively read, recommended, and shared. “This looks exactly like a strange configuration in Wilmington, Delaware, which has always puzzled me,” wrote one reader on social media. “Think I now know why.”
We’re committed to publishing articles that challenge and enlarge how we think about the built environment and the public realm.
Please help us maintain our momentum this #GivingTuesday — by sustaining our mission with a gift, if you’re able, and by spreading the word about our work with your networks. Thanks to the generosity of our board members, every gift we receive today will be matched up until we reach our #GivingTuesday target of $5,000.
We’re grateful for your support for public scholarship on issues that matter in architecture, landscape, and urbanism.