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Tagore Memorial Grove History

The Tagore Memorial Grove in Houston's Ray Miller Park, is playing a significant role in promoting the humanistic philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore to the world. With its beautiful architecture and serene surroundings, the memorial stands as a symbol of inspiration and artistic expression. Explore the history of Tagore Memorial Houston through this post,which features photos, detailed descriptions, and links to articles that delve deeper into its significance.

1/1/20252 min read

In the beginning....

Phase 1 - The Statue

In 2012, TSH first envisioned the idea of a permanent memorial to Tagore as the most meaningful way to propagate Tagore's humanistic philosophy and universalism. In concept, these memorials would be places for "peace and introspection", much like the Lincoln Memorial or the Statue of Liberty. This led to a search for possible sites for the 1st Grove, and of course what it should look like. For the 1st site, after an exhaustive search, it was possible to get a location in the Ray Miller Park, 1800 Eldridge Pkwy, Houston, for which TSH is eternally thankful to the Harris County Parks & Recreation and the City of Houston. For the look, it was decided to have a full size statue of Rabindranath Tagore set in a Grove of flowering plants.. The attached picture and other related photos shows the look of the Grove after the inauguration of the Grove. The inauguration was in Sept 13, 2013.

The Dedication Plaque at the Grove
The Dedication Plaque at the Grove
The Dedication Plaque at the Grove
Pictures of the Statue installation and Inauguration
Tagore Grove after Installation of Statue

Completing the vision.....

Phase 2 - The Memorial

The installation of a full size statue of Rabindranath Tagore in 2013 was a big step for Tagore Society of Houston, but it was the first step in the larger vision of creating a permanent Memorial to Tagore.  We envisioned a Memorial that would have sufficient information to expose visitors not only to Tagore's philosophy and words but also acquaint them with the arc of Tagore's life, his many achievements in various fields and his interactions with world leaders during his time. Visitors would not only learn about Tagore the man, but also get touched by the enduring beauty of Tagore's words and relevance of his thoughts.  In 2018, it was therefore decided to augment the Statue into a full Memorial with content as described above.  The only direction given to the architect was that the structure should be iconic, easy to maintain, but evoke a "holy space".  It should be a significant addition to Houston's architectural scene.  The graphic below shows the final architectural concept that was adopted for the Memorial. As can be seen from the graphic it is a simple open structure, but very iconic, almost like a modern day Stonehenge, consisting of panels of information surrounding the statue.  Visitors can wander inside and outside the Memorial, view the panels of information, as if in an open-air museum.  The Memorial was inaugurated on Feb 25, 2023, exactly about 102 years after Tagore's seminal visit to Houston in Feb 1921.  It is a free memorial, open to all.

Architect's Vision of the Memorial
A video of the finished Memorial (video by Mr. & Mrs. Bhori)
Videos tracing the construction of the Memorial from the shop floor to the site
A video capturing a part of the construction phase (video by Espinal Architects)
A video showing Surajit Dasgupta describing the design of the Memorial (video by visitor Veera P)