Lovely church in So. Africa


The UK firm Steyn Studio has completed the design of a chapel in South Africa’s western cape province. set within a vineyard, the building’s sculptural form mirrors the outline of the surrounding mountain ranges, while simultaneously referencing the region’s distinctive cape dutch architecture. noticeably designed without a traditional spire, the roof canopy has been constructed from a slim, concrete cast shell.

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all images courtesy of steyn studio

The church was designed by south african-born Coetzee Steyn of steyn studio.  The undulating roof of ‘bosjes chapel’ rises and falls dramatically with the expanses of glazing, formed where each wave of the canopy rises to a peak become adjoined by symbolic crosses and elevated on a plinth.  The crisp white form is bordered by a reflective pond positioned to emphasize its apparent weightlessness.  The building is also flanked by a lush vineyard and pomegranate orchard as these fruits are mentioned in the book of Genesis.

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The  building’s sculptural form mirrors the outline of the surrounding mountain ranges, but also is an unceasing wave.  Internally, a large, open assembly space has been formed within a simple rectangular plan and  the whitewashed ceiling casts an array of shadows throughout the day, while polished terrazzo floors help reflect light. a neutral material palette not only allows parishioners to focus on prayer, but also enables the framed views of the surrounding landscape to take prominence.

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Since the Church is physically set within a vineyard,  the chapel is noticeably designed without a traditional spire to maintain the purity of the scheme’s structural form, the architects chose to hide elements of the building’s functional program discretely within the plinth, or even inside the outer corners of the adjacent garden. designed to be a welcoming and inviting structure, the chapel extends outwards into the valley, embracing its natural setting.

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As shown here, the expanses of glazing are adjoined by symbolic crosses

coetzee-steyn-studio-bosjes-chapel-western-cape-south-africa-designboom-02
a large, open assembly space has been formed within a simple rectangular plan

coetzee-steyn-studio-bosjes-chapel-western-cape-south-africa-designboom-02
the whitewashed ceiling casts an array of shadows throughout the day

coetzee-steyn-studio-bosjes-chapel-western-cape-south-africa-designboom-02
polished terrazzo floors help reflect light

coetzee-steyn-studio-bosjes-chapel-western-cape-south-africa-designboom-02
a neutral material palette enables the views of the surrounding landscape to take prominence.  Indeed is a beautiful church.

See the rest here.