San Bernardo Chapel, Argentina

interior brown brick chappel modern design natural light San Bernardo Chappel
San Bernardo Chappel, Argentinia © Nicolás Campodónico

Architects Nicolás Campodonico Estudio, Argentinia
Location La Playosa, Argentina
Construction period 06.2012 - 04.2015
Nomination category
Sharing public spaces
Purpose Place of worship
Usable floor area 92 m²
Brick type Clay blocks

Located in the interior of Argentina, the San Bernardo Chapel is a building full of meaning and cultural references. It unites this special place, the principles of church building and a striking form, and then reduces everything to a minimum. The building was constructed on the site of a former rural property. There is still no water connection or electricity, so  only the sun and nature influence the ambience. Outside, the building is characterized by flat surfaces, while the interior surfaces are curved. The chapel’s architecture is interesting in itself, but the architect also decided to focus on the play of sunlight and to refer to the symbolic importance of light in Christianity. Shafts of light enter through a west-facing open dome, and can be seen along the walls. As the sunlight varies, so do the shadows projected against the church wall. There is a special point on the eastern side of the church where  the shadows occur as a cross. The San Bernardo Chapel represents  simplicity and tradition by using old materials combined with a contemporary altar design.

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