A unique church where coloured concrete matches the colour of the red African soil and the Scandinavian tradition of wood is maintained
This project by Belatchew Arkitekter in Stockholm, Sweden, is about creating a place for a community and bringing together an ancient tradition with modern needs in another part of the world.
The building is composed of coloured concrete that takes up the colour of the red African soil and the weight and materiality from the unique rock hewn churches of Lalibela in northern Ethiopia. The feeling of weight being conveyed by the outwardly inclined walls. On the inside, the Scandinavian tradition of wood is visible through large timber frames and panels.
The main feature of the church is its large, round church hall with a central dome. The deliberately introvert volume takes in daylight from above avoiding openings in the façade. The lack of openings in the facade enables the visitor to start an inner spiritual journey without distraction from the residential neighbourhood. The windowless facades also enhance the sculptural feature of the building and emphasizes the rough materiality of the red concrete. The dome is made of a copper like metal amidst green roofs.