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Martin Luther Church, Hainburg, Austria

Thursday 18 Aug 2011

A reflective space

© Duccio Malagamba 
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24/08/11 Hayder AlAnsari, Dubai
From what I see, the designer was clearly inspired by Ghery and Tado. Honestly, I don't think it's a good idea to merge those two influences together in a church. I do not think it will accommodate the spiritual space of the church of light, nor the funky space of the Guggenheim museum.
23/08/11 Prakash m Apte, Mumbai
Among the religions in the world it is Christianity that has readily adopted and adapted its places of worship to the changing architectural expressions and stylized versions by Architects. I am neither a christian nor a religious person. But i do feel that a place of worship must somehow "connect" the worshiper with the almighty whatever its concept may be for each religion. Unlike a house which need not be looked at but has to be lived in' the home of 'god' has to be looked up to as well as felt humble in!
this church can be looked up to but does its interior create an atmosphere or an aura of being in close proximity of the supreme power? To me its interior is more like a B grade interior design showroom in a store like IKEA
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Contemporary place of worship by Austrian practice replaces 17th century church 

Coop Himmelb(l)au have just released these stunning images of a small church in the modest Austrian town of Hainburg. With construction completed in less than a year, the project has moved incredibly swiftly, progressing from design to realisation in only three years.

The number three plays a continuous part in this glossy religious scheme, a feature that the design studio refers to as ‘deliberate coincidence’. Taking three years to complete, the interior volumes are starkly lit by natural daylight which filters in through three large openings in the roof, correlating with the concept of The Trinity in Christian theology.

Interior spaces can also be divided into three sections: a sanctuary; the church hall; and supporting facilities. An open yet peaceful sanctuary leads through to a glass-covered children’s corner and baptistery, beyond which is situated the communal church hall. A set of folding doors separates the two areas however this can be drawn back to merge the volumes creating a continuous spatial sequence.

A similar approach has been used on the facade, which can be concertinaed back to open the internal space to the outside. At right angles to this is a longitudinal slab building along a small side alley, supporting the sacristy, the pastor’s office, a small kitchen and additional ancillary spaces.

Rising above this metallic complex is a sculptural bell tower. Weighing a hefty 8 tonnes, the musical pillar soars to 20m in height and makes the church highly recognisable from a great distance. In assembling the building Coop Himmelb(l)au ultilised the appropriate technologies and skills of a shipyard on the Baltic Sea, explaining: “The reference to shipbuilding is at the same time also reminiscent of Le Corbusier who served as an important role model, not least because of his La Tourette monastery.“

Layers of steel have been built up over suspended frames before being welded together onsite, and range between 8mm and 16mm in thickness throughout. The bell tower is a vertical self-supporting steel structure whereas the roof construction of the remainder of the building rests on four steel columns (compared by the architects to the ‘legs of a table’).

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
COOP HIMMELB(L)AU Wolf D. Prix & Partner ZT GmbH

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