Libraries Present Exhibit in Commemoration of 20th Anniversary of September 11 Terrorist Attacks

September 8, 2021
Collective Memory 911 exhibit 2021-09-08

A unique exhibit examining the legacy of the 9/11 terrorist attacks is on display in Moody Memorial Library through September. The installation features a work by Sheryl Oring, a former journalist-turned-artist whose work addresses “themes of citizenship, free expression, first amendment rights, story-telling and activism.”

“Collective Memory” was staged by Oring in New York City in the fall of 2011, ten years after the attacks on the World Trade Center (as well as the Pentagon and a flight that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania) left thousands of Americans dead. Oring invited passersby to write down their memories of 9/11 on index cards and then displayed them for others to read. The cards were subsequently exhibited at the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, NC.

“This powerful work reminds us of how events can shape each of us in profound yet unique ways,” said Sha Towers, founder and curator of the Baylor Book Arts Collection. “Artists like Oring and their work help challenge us to reflect and respond to the world around us, even in the darkest of times.”

The Libraries Exhibit Curator and Coordinator, Erik Swanson, wanted to go beyond simply displaying the “Collective Memory” piece and added an interactive element: asking viewers today to add their own memories via notecards provided nearby.

“We were interested to see what sort of feelings 9/11 generated among the student population, especially since most of them were too young to remember what happened,” Swanson said. “Just because students did not experience the event does not mean their lives haven’t been affected it.”

The exhibit will be on display in the Goodpasture Concourse of Moody Memorial Library through September. For more information on the Baylor Book Arts Collection – established in 2003 and now featuring more than 1,700 works – please contact Sha Towers ( or visit the Book Arts Collections’ website at