chapel of reconciliation, berlin

Friday 17 January 2014

While in Berlin, I visited The Chapel of Reconciliation, designed by Rudolf Reiterman and Peter Sassenrath. Both the history of the site and the architecture contribute to the power of this space.

The chapel straddles the old boundary between East & West Germany and replaces the former chapel, which was destroyed to make way for the Berlin Wall. It's composed of two concentric ovals. The outer oval is an open timber batten structure and the inner oval is solid rammed earth. The solid, uninterrupted surface of the rammed earth wall disengages the internal space from its urban surrounds, encouraging an inward contemplation that exists outside of everyday life. 

A skylight connects the internal space with the sky and exaggerates the rippling texture of the rammed earth. The rammed earth contains the crushed remains of the previous chapel, embedding further soul and meaning into a material that from my point of view, already encourages me to feel more human.

[Photos by me]


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