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Roman Catholic Church in Radebeul

The brief required a church that would radiate a sense of spaciousness and light. In response to this, the architects took the idea of a service in the open air as a starting point for their design. The quality of the site – a park-like garden surrounded by high stone walls – was to be reflected in the interior. The triangular church space is enclosed within a facade that possesses various degrees of transparency. There are no full-height walls internally. The only vertical elements are the reredos and a curved wall beneath the gallery (both in exposed concrete), which lend the space a sense of direction and articulation.

A major architectural element of the church is the coloured light that enters through the stained-glass windows, especially in the upper part of the south-east facade. To heighten the iridescent effect, blown glass in primary colours was used. The glass was cut in strips and fitted into double-webbed slabs. Since the length of the glass elements is limited to 90cm, three strips were set end to end to cover the full height of the slabs. The strips are held in position by plastic sections. The paler coloration of the south-west entrance face was achieved with yellow-orange and yellow-green perspex strips in translucent or transparent webbed slabs. There are views to the outside from many parts of the church, with the result that the verdant surroundings are also incorporated into the play of colours.

This article is taken out of the following magazine:
DETAIL 4/2004

Building with Light

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