NONUMENT 01::McKeldin Fountain

Lisa Moren, Neja Tomsic, Martin Baraga and Jaimes Mayhew

Artist Statement

“NONUMENT 01:: McKeldin Fountain” is Baltimore’s virtual monument located in the Inner Harbor and free speech zone. 

In opposition to bronze and stone, the nonument or “no monument” recreates the destroyed Brutalist-style monument the City of Baltimore and private partners tore down in January 2017. installs new and emerging media forms in order to capture the transitory significance of everyday experiences. We seek to honor hidden urban spaces that carry symbolic value for ordinary people. 

By using this app, anyone can put back the fountain and experience first-hand memories from ordinary activities, art events and protests, including uprisings following the death of Freddie Gray, Peace Vigils, LGBTQ issues and Occupy Baltimore. 

When viewers hold up a mobile device like a protest sign, the participant will put back the fountain with 18 animated waterfalls including an infamous double waterfall. Viewers will see and hear documented interviews that includes a diversity of Baltimore voices from a former Mayor and ACLU lawyer to rappers, teachers and protestors, including the Women In Black who stood for peace at the site every Friday since December 2001. “Whisper Chambers” inside the fountain offer underrepresented voices in Baltimore City that are often unheard but significant to the vibrant life of any urban environment. 

The story of McKeldin Fountain is part of the escalating privatization of public spaces worldwide, a trend that continues to diminish access to full participation and free speech for ordinary people in everyday urban life. This socially engaged intervention is an ambitious take on the latest AR technology in order to address the politics of reclaiming public space including: how public behavior is controlled by a variety of mechanisms? and, who has more exclusive access to what spaces? 

This augmented reality public art project is free to download to your phone. 

Project Website


Video Documentation

Artists: Lisa Moren, Director and Lead Production; Jaimes Mayhew, Co-Production; Martin Bricelj Baraga and Neja Tomšič, NONUMENT founders. 

Software coding and app development by Balti-Virtual 
Sound Score by Erik Spangler with “Whisper Chambers” by JMoney fur 
Interviews by Lisa Moren 
Interview editing by Jaimes Mayhew with audio engineering by Lexie Mountain 
“Artist Audio Tour” by Lisa Moren with audio engineering by Timothy Nohe 
3D models by Ben Shaffer, and by Ryan Zuber, IRC at UMBC. 
The 3D printed model was printed by the good folks at the Digital Harbor Foundation

This project grateful for the generous support from the Saul Zaentz Innovation Fund in Film + Media at Johns Hopkins University. We are also grateful for support from The Andy Warhol Foundation for The Visual Arts, The Grit Fund, Baltimore Women and Tech, and the Imaging Research Center and CAHSS at UMBC. 

Special thanks to for the expertise of Audrey Ewall, Fred Scharmen, Mike Schector and the Saul Zaentz Incubation Team. We appreciate the dedicated support from MoTA Museum, Baltimore Visitors Center, D-Center and Maryland Art Place who support this project in so many flexible ways.