Creativity Takes Courage
The combined talents of many fine artists and creators have resulted in a Memorial like no other.
Built to human scale, the Memorial’s sculptures, story wall, and granite-inlaid compass rose are both intimate and inclusive. Memorial elements embrace the waters of the Chesapeake Bay to touch distant shores and connect us to a broader world.
Dramatic lighting at night illuminates the Memorial – and so illuminates one family’s story representative of so many family stories.
The following artists had a primary role in the creation of the Memorial:
Gary S. Schwerzler, Interpretive Architect
Site Design — Land and Water Combine to Deliver a Unique and Intimate Experience
Gary S. Schwerzler is the interpretive architect behind the design of the entire memorial complex, from its inception in 1992 to its completion in 2002. Schwerzler created, with broad community input, a Memorial site design that seamlessly integrates the bronze sculpture group, compass rose, story wall, and other components with the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. The Memorial site is an accessible, compelling, and inspirational public space at the center of the city of Annapolis at the foot of its harbor.
Ed Dwight, Sculptor
The Sculpture Group Artist
The sculptor of the Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Memorial, Ed Dwight, has created some 55 monuments and memorials to important Americans. Dwight memorials to noted African Americans include A. Phillip Randolph, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., George Washington Carver, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman, Hank Aaron, and Dr. Benjamin Mays. One of Dwight’s largest memorials is a tribute to the Underground Railroad installed on the grounds of the Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan.
Story Wall & Information Stand
Peter D. Tasi, Graphic Designer
Story Wall Design—Art and Graphics Help Tell the Story
Peter D. Tasi has been an exhibition designer for nearly 40 years and designed the graphics for the ten bronze, one-of-a-kind, plaques that comprise the Story Wall.
A graduate of Pratt Institute in Graphic, Architectural, and Industrial design, Tasi has designed U.S. government exhibitions locally and abroad. Later, with two partners in Washington, D.C., he produced the opening exhibit for the Smithsonian’s Renwick Gallery and the first logo for the National Endowment for the Arts. After establishing his own studio in Annapolis, Maryland, Tasi designed numerous exhibitions for the Jewish Museum of Maryland.
Patricia Fisher McHold, Sculptor/Painter
Artist Patricia Fisher assisted Peter Tasi in plaque design. McHold has been a sculptor and painter for over 30 years. Her masks in paper, clay, and other media have been used in dance productions and stem from an interest in ritual and psychodrama.
Story Wall: Narrative
Wiley A. Hall, 3rd, Executive Editor of The Afro-American Newspapers
Wiley A. Hall — Story Wall Narrative Shares Message of Love, Reconciliation, and Universal Hope
Award-winning journalist Wiley A. Hall, 3rd conceptualized and wrote the text for the story wall plaques, drawing upon epigraphs translated from Alex Haley’s Pulitzer prize-winning book, Roots.
- City of Annapolis
- Fort Meyer Construction Company
- Pagliaro Brothers Stone Company
- Signcraft, Inc.