Artist search underway for public memorial to honor Dayton mass shooting victims

2nd in-person artist info session is Saturday, new session added for Nov. 12.

An artist search is underway for a public memorial for the victims of the mass shooting more than three years ago in Dayton’s historic Oregon District.

The 8/4 Memorial Committee is seeking artists, artist teams, designers or architects to design a public artwork to serve as a remembrance of the tragic events of Aug. 4, 2019, when a shooter killed nine people and wounded 27.

“This memorial will play a major role in the healing of our community,” said Sandy Hunt, co-chair of the 8/4 Memorial Committee. “Survivors, family members of victims, and the general public all provided us with their perspectives on what this artwork will mean to those who were affected by the tragedy. It’s important to us to provide something accessible and meaningful to support everyone’s recovery.”

The three-phased process begins with a request for qualifications, due Dec. 5 through The Contemporary Dayton’s website at Artists, or at least one member of the artist team, must meet one or more of the following criteria: be a current or recent resident of the Dayton area; have a connection to a current or recent resident of the Dayton area; or have a connection to or have been affected by the 8/4 event or similar event, the committee said.

Up to five artists will be selected and each paid a $1,500 stipend to present a final design. The winning artist or team will receive a $200,000 award to create the public art memorial.

The Contemporary Dayton, known as “The Co,” will host artist information sessions from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Wesley Community Center 3730 Delphos Ave., Dayton; and 3 to 5 p.m. Nov. 12 at the Dayton Metro Library, Conference Room 3A, 215 E. Third St.

The Co also will organize artist team meet-up sessions via Zoom for artists to connect and form teams that meet the eligibility criteria. The sessions are 2 p.m. Sunday; and 6 p.m. Nov. 16.

“This memorial is about connection and coming together,” said Sandra K. Gudorf, co-chair of the 8/4 Memorial Committee. “We are looking for an artist or group of artists who can understand how this event affected our community and how they can help us pay tribute to the nine people we lost and the countless others who were impacted.”

For more information about the 8/4 Committee and memorial, contact co-chairs Sandy Gudorf at or call 937-224-1518 or Sandy Hunt, or 937-225-6262.

For information about the request for qualifications, contact Cydnie King, curatorial assistant at The Co, at or 937-224-3882.

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