Apart from the distinctively natural Nordic cladding of the Vaaler Kirke (church), this project seems to flaunt a formal manifestation without roots in past architectural styles. But this impression would not be correct. The elegant Danish lumber-cloaked chapel embodies a Baroque-appropriated form that's been adapted for a dramatic contemporary structure.
The timeless arch shape features here in a surprisingly reversed orientation, becoming a sort of symbolic catenary study that references the slung appearance of draped ornaments within antique places of worship -- be them carved decorations or separate trimmings. From the exterior, the beholder is confronted with one massive inverted vault and from the inside, with several gracefully sagging rows of rafters. To complement these engaging geometries in the Vaaler Kirke is the regular but rough skin of slender shingles.
Sunken Scandinavian Sanctuaries
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