IAD Build Your Own Monument Challenge

Build Your Own Monument

Parthenon – Angkor Wat – Pueblo Bonito – Pick Your Own

The 2021 competition is over. Be sure to check out all of our wonderful submissions below. Thank you to all of our participants who constructed a monument!

Looking for fun ways to pass the time at home?  The Archaeological Institute of America challenges you to build your own monument! 

After receiving fabulous submissions for Stonehenge, Chichen Itza (El Castillo), the Colosseum, and the Pyramids at Giza in our inaugural contest in 2020, we’re back for more! We invite you to try your hand at replicating some of the most iconic archaeological sites of all time. There will be separate competitions for youth, families, and adults and considerations will be made for the sites that are the most realistic and/or use the most original materials.  We also encourage edible submissions! 

So, dig into your pantries or arts and crafts supplies and let your creativity shine!  Winners will receive an AIA prize pack.

Categories and Submissions


DeadlineOnline VotingSiteResults
April 9April 12-15Parthenon at the Acropolis, GreeceResults
April 16April 19-22Central temple structure at Angkor Wat, CambodiaResults
April 23April 26-29Pueblo Bonito at Chaco Canyon, New Mexicono entries
April 30May 3-6Pick Your Own MonumentResults

2020 Results

Meet our celebrity judges: 

Joan Breton Connelly

Joan Breton Connelly, Professor of Classics at New York University and Director of the NYU Yeronisos Island Excavations and Field School in Cyprus, has received the AIA’s Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award and the AIA’s James R. Wiseman Book Award for Portrait of a Priestess, while her Parthenon Enigma received the Phi Beta Kappa Society’s Ralph Waldo Emerson Award for best book in the Humanities. Connelly’s first paying job was as a tennis instructor.

Dougald O’Reilly

Dougald O’Reilly, Associate Professor of Archaeology at the Australian National University in Canberra, is currently investigating the mysterious Plain of Jars culture in Laos. He is the director of Heritage Watch, an organization dedicated to stopping the destruction of cultural heritage in Cambodia, and in his spare time makes art of questionable quality and works on a board game that has nothing to do with archaeology!

Joe Watkins

Joe Watkins is a Senior Consultant at Archaeological and Cultural Education Consultants, LLC, and a Designated Campus Colleague (Adjunct Associate Professor) in the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona. While he has always looked forward to retirement, he has found over the course of the last three years that it is not for the weak-hearted!

Laetitia La Follette

Laetitia La Follette is Professor of the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and President of the AIA. Although her current research focuses on Roman portraits, her first love was ancient architecture so she is looking forward to this year’s Build your Own Monument competition.

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