Bosjes Chapel / Steyn Studio

Bosjes Chapel / Steyn Studio

© Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch © Adam Letch + 27

Chapel  · 
South Africa, South Africa
  • Architects Authors of this architecture project Steyn Studio
  • Area Area of this architecture project
    430.0 m2
  • Project Year Brands with products used in this architecture project
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    PERI, PG Smartglass, Shotcrete :, Sika, Terrazzo & Marble
  • Photographs

    • Lead Project architect

      TV3 Architects (South Africa)
    • Furniture Design

      Liam Mooney Studio
    • Contractor

      Longworth & Faul
    • Structural engineer

      Henry Fagan & Partners
    • Mechanical & Electrical engineer

      Solution Station
    • Quantity surveyor

      De Leeuw
    • Planning consultant

      Ron Brunings
    • Landscape architect

      CNdV Landscape Architects
    • Heritage Consultants

      Graham Jacobs, Elzet Albertyn & Lize Malan
    More Specs Less Specs
    © Adam Letch
    © Adam Letch

    Text description provided by the architects. The new chapel, set within a vineyard in South Africa, is designed by South-African born Coetzee Steyn of London based Steyn Studio. Its serene sculptural form emulates the silhouette of surrounding mountain ranges, paying tribute to the historic Cape Dutch gables dotting the rural landscapes of the Western Cape. Constructed from a slim concrete cast shell, the roof supports itself as each undulation dramatically falls to meet the ground. Where each wave of the roof structure rises to a peak, expanses of glazing adjoined centrally by a crucifix adorn the façade.

    © Adam Letch
    © Adam Letch

    Drawing poetic inspiration from Psalm 36:7, the crisp white form is conceived as a lightweight, and dynamic structure which appears to float within the valley. A reflective pond emphasises the apparent weightlessness of the structure. Elevated upon a plinth, the chapel rises from the flat land its sits upon, providing a hierarchical focal point within its surroundings. New planting including a vineyard and pomegranate orchard create a lush green oasis on the otherwise exposed site.


    Inside, a large and open assembly space is created within a simple rectangular plan. Highly polished terazzo floors reflect light internally. The undulating whitewashed ceiling casts an array of shadows which dance within the volume as light levels change throughout the day. This modest palette of materials creates a neutral background to the impressive framed views of the vineyard and mountains beyond. 

    © Adam Letch
    © Adam Letch

    In order to keep the structural form of the roof and assembly space pure, other elements of the buildings functional programme are either hidden within the plinth, or discretely within the outer corners of the surrounding garden.

    Courtesy of Steyn Studio
    Courtesy of Steyn Studio

    Inspired by the simplicity of the Moravian Mission Stations established on Cape Dutch farms in the 19th Century, the chapel lacks a spire – relinquishing a sense of significance in relation to its impressive natural surroundings. 

    © Adam Letch
    © Adam Letch

    An open embrace which invites in, the chapel is also a space that extends outwards into the valley and mountains beyond, raising the awareness of God’s creation in the immediate environment.

    © Adam Letch
    © Adam Letch

    Project gallery

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    Project location

    Address: Breederiver Valley, R43, Witzenberg Municipality, South Africa

    Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
    About this office
    Cite: "Bosjes Chapel / Steyn Studio" 20 Mar 2017. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884
    © Adam Letch

    Bosjes 教堂 / Steyn Studio

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