Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Modern Church

Have a look at this video it is from NLM: after the intro it is about a Church being built by Duncan Stroik at Thomas Aquinas University.I think five years ago, it would be impossible to build a Church like this in England and Wales, now, despite the fact monstrosities are being built, there is a serious ground swell to something more traditional. It is both the Benedict effect but also the fact that buildings like this are actually being built across the pond.
Thanks, our American cousins.


gemoftheocean said...

Amen to the monstrosities...may they cease and desist!!!

BTW, this school is one of the few colleges in the US that bases their curriculum on the great books. The school is highly ranked both academically and in student satisfaction. There are no majors/minors but a common liberal arts curriculum.

Physiocrat said...

It is good to see that the age of monstrosities could be coming to an end. This building is reminiscent of St Saviour's, Lewisham and St Peter's Hove, both by the architect Kelly who worked for the Diocese of Southwark at the beginning of the twentieth century. Presumably these were based on the same model, as there are remarkable similarities both in detail and overall conception, though the Kelly churches are much smaller.

It is difficult, however, to think of an actual situation in Britain where such a design of church would work convincingly even if it were carefully constructed for authenticity - St Peter's looks odd in its suburban situation. St Saviour's is a better fit, standing in Lewisham High Street, a busy shopping centres; but only the west end facade to a street elevation is visible, set in a terrace of mid Victorian buildings.

I think there is a need to look to a variety of historical models for different situations. Mostly they need to be simple and probably not in a Classical style, eg you could probably get away with a Romanesque building in a concrete jungle location, whereas for a suburb the kind of red brick Gothic style popular in the 1900s would still work perfectly well.

Of recent churches in Sussex, the one in Steyning is basically not bad apart from the plain glass and whitewash all over the walls. It should not be forgotten that there are numerous recent churches which owe nothing to the Modern Movement and are perfectly horrible, and a handful of good ones in concrete and glass, eg those by August Perret which show the possibilities of machine age materials and techniques.

Cathy said...

'Tis also the alma mater of one of our finest priests and his Missionary of Charity sister.

A good school, period.

humboldt said...

Exquisite. Beautiful. Catholic.

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