This week we’ve selected the best chapels previously published on our site. They reveal different ways of designing a small and sacred space. For inspiration on how to create these atmospheres, integrate different materials, and make proper use of light, we present 32 remarkable examples.
This project emerged during the summer of 2015, when CHOPEkE Collective, together with Paúl Pérez, a seminarian and active member of the group, visited the community of Santa Luisa de Marillac, located in the central periphery of Ciudad Juárez. At the time, members of the community had an "unworthy" space -as they called it- for their meetings and spiritual activities.
A pure volume, slightly lit, sits in the middle of a garden. It is a private chapel in Quinta de St. Ovídio in Lousada, built between 1989 and 2001 and designed by Álvaro Siza Vieira. The project starts from a path, where you can see the prismatic white volume from afar. As you pass through the building and some steps, you arrive at the entrance square. Here you will notice that Siza differentiated the main facade, in stone, from the other three, in white painted concrete, giving it importance.
Foster + Partners has released details of their proposed chapel to form part of the Vatican’s inaugural entry to the Venice Biennale. The Holy See Pavilion will comprise ten chapels designed by ten architects, to be situated on the Venetian Island of San Giorgio Maggiore. Among the architects contributing to the circuit of chapels are Foster + Partners, Eduardo Souto de Mourao, and Francesco Cellini.
The Vatican has released details of the Holy See Pavilion for the 2018 Venice Biennale, marking the Vatican’s first ever entry to the architectural exhibition. Situated on the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore, the Holy See Pavilion will lead visitors on a journey through ten chapels designed by ten architects.
The beginning of the journey will be marked by the Asplund Chapel, designed by MAP Studio and built by ALPI, drawing inspiration from the “Woodland Chapel” built in 1920 by Gunnar Asplund at the Woodland Cemetery in Stockholm.
LocationYanjiang East 3rd Rd, Zengcheng Qu, Guangzhou Shi, Guangdong Sheng, China
Lead ArchitectsJinghua Li, Chaoxiong Li, Zhihua Li, Yingquan Pan, Minshan Liang, Xiaowei Zhu
Once again, thanks to our collaboration with Sketchfab, here we have a selection of 9 virtual experiences through churches and chapels from Europe, Africa and the Americas. Each small building has its own special story, either geographical, political or structural—from one building that has experienced its own mini tour of Europe, to another which contains some rather unusual building materials. The diverse sites each seem to hold secrets, all of which can now be explored through 3D scanning technology. The fascinating variation in structural forms is also apparent, showcasing how even humble architecture has the potential to create a rich list of virtual spaces.
For a more immersive experience, all of these models can be viewed on a virtual reality headset such as Google Cardboard.
Open Platform for Architecture (OPA) has released designs for the latest in their series of cliffside buildings: Lux Aeterna / Holy Cross Chapel. Similar to their previous project, Casa Brutale, the chapel employs a style referred to by OPA as “Transcendental Brutalism,” and has been embedded into the side of a cliff. The front profile of the building takes the shape of a cross, to be a seen as a spiritual beacon as it is approached from the water.
Once dubbed a “flying saucer,” the Parish (Church) of the Holy Sacrifice is a Modernist expression which embodies the complex colonial history of the Philippines. Located on a university campus in Quezon City (formerly the capital of the nation, now a part of the Metro Manila National Capital Region), the domed concrete church was the product of Filipino architect Leandro Locsin, and of three other national artists who contributed to the building’s interior. Locsin’s design, which combines elements of traditional Filipino architecture with postwar International aesthetics, is a potent symbol of a newly-independent nation following centuries of imperial control.
Hiroshi Nakamura, architect of the Ribbon Chapel in Japan, describes the design ideology and his personal favorite elements of the project in this stunning new video by Matthew Allard ACS. Shooting the chapel at various times during the day, its changing characteristics are captured in the movement of the light and camera, the twisting concrete forms seeming to dance.
The highly acclaimed Los Angeles-based practice Brooks + Scarpa Architects, along with KZF Design, have released plans for a new Interfaith Chapel at the University of North Florida. Drawing inspiration from a free-flowing wedding gown, its informally shaped footprint - reminiscent of an allegorical figure such as Justice, Faith, Hope, Charity, Prudence and Fortitude - flows upward and culminates at the top with a large skylight whose light is diffused by a wooden lattice spire that is derived from the symbol of infinity.
The symbolic, 7000 square-foot structure will provide students with an intimate, spiritual space that may be used daily while also supporting a variety of diverse religious services, such as student ceremonies, weddings, lectures, meditative practices, musical performances and more.
Learn more about Brooks + Scarpa’s wooden chapel after the break.